Actions to stop online coronavirus scam sellers ripping off citizens.

The European Commission said it welcomes the replies of the online platforms Allegro, Amazon, AliExpress, Bing, CDiscount, Ebay, Facebook, Google, Rakuten, Wish and Yahoo to take measures to stop online scams promoting fake products against the virus (face masks, gloves, sanitisers).

All of them showed strong commitment and responded positively to the Commission’s call: not only did they put in place specific communication channels to increase cooperation with national consumer authorities, they also detailed the measures taken to address and prevent misleading practices and consumer scams.

On 23 March, the Commission alerted the platforms on the most common consumer scams related to the coronavirus crisis. Vice-President Věra Jourová also recalled the obligations of the platforms towards consumers and their protection particularly in the crisis during her call with the major platforms on 27th March.

This is a part of a wider EU’s effort to help platforms and other digital players become more responsible and tackle coronavirus related disinformation and consumer fraud.

Didier Reynders, Commissioner for Justice, said: “I welcome platforms, social media, marketplaces and search engines’ prompt reaction to my call to build a strong alliance with EU consumer watchdogs. Only together can we effectively block the channels fraudsters use to exploit consumers’ fears caused by the coronavirus crisis.

"I am pleased to see that strong measures were taken and expect they will be applied consistently through the crisis. I call on all operators to keep them in place until the crisis is over.”

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Martin Banks

Martin Banks

Martin Banks is a highly qualified journalist with many years experience of working within the EU institutions. He is an occasional, and highly valued, contributor to EU today, writing on a wide variety of issues.

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