Global online retailer Amazon has announced that it has started an investigation into reported internal leaks of private information by employees as part of bribes to take down fake reviews and other scams on its network.
The initial report about the scheme came from the Wall Street Journal. According to that report, Amazon employees used intermediaries to provide internal data and other confidential information to various independent merchants selling products on its website in return for payments to help boost sales. Some of this information included internal sales metrics, reviewers’ email addresses and the ability to restore banned accounts and delete negative reviews. In return, the merchant would pay anywhere from $80 to $2,000.
This is a violation of written Amazon policy. The practice has been especially popular in China, which has seen a major boom in the number of sellers on Amazon recently.
A spokesperson for Amazon released the following statement: “We hold our employees to a high ethical standard and anyone in violation of our code faces discipline, including termination and potential legal and criminal penalties.”
Report wrongdoing right away
It can be understandably intimidating to report wrongdoing in your company. However, there are more protections afforded to whistleblowers than ever before, and in some cases, whistleblowers get to share in any money recovered as a result of the tips they provide.
To learn more about the Amazon investigation and the steps you should take if you have valuable information you can provide as a whistleblower, speak with an experienced attorney at Kardell Law Group.