The Massive Cyber Fraud At Amazon: Merchants Losing Massive Amount Of Money

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The main objective of a hacker is the usage of a compromised account.

In 2018, about 100 Amazon merchants fell into the pit of cyber fraud. This was an “extensive” hit affecting Amazon merchants for over 6 months. According to Bloomberg, unidentified hackers used phishing techniques to gain access to the sellers’ accounts which were meant to maintain funds earned through sales and loans.

The sellers of Amazon, the ecommerce behemoth, lost their cash, earnings, loans in the period May 2018 to October 2018, according to Media report. The company revealed in a filing with the UK Regulatory Board in November.

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The hackers manipulated banking credentials of sellers on Amazon Seller Central platform and syphoned off the funds. Amazon’s lawyers have appealed to the London judge to look after the Barclay’s and Prepay accounts where the stolen money was transferred to.

Amazon’s spokesperson said they were done with the investigation and a thorough search was conducted and it is difficult for Amazon to catch the perpetrators without documents in hand.

The first instance of the fraud supposedly took place on May 16th 2018, but there is no definite number as to how much funds have been taken out by hackers. However, it can be an easy guess as no less than hundreds of thousand dollars being redirected to malicious actors.

Amazon Capital Services U.K. Ltd. is responsible for the loans distributed amongst the sellers. Though the filing couldn’t say for sure as to how the hackers successfully break through and added details of additional banks to merchant accounts. To deter this kind of mishappenings and wrongdoings, to investigate the case thoroughly and identify to pursue the wrongdoer Amazon needed documents, as stated by Amazon’s lawyer in the filing.

The practice of giving out loans to third-party sellers to boost their sales is widespread in markets Amazon operates in, which was revealed from the filings. In 2017, it was disclosed that Amazon loaned $1 billion to merchants, which was much higher than the loan amount Amazon provided to merchants between 2011 and 2016.

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The rising number of cyber crimes is quite concerning in all developing countries and India is no exception. In 2017-18, Reserve Bank of India registered about 2059 caseswhich amounted to a sum total of Rs 109.6 crore (US$13.7 million)

Amazon has upped the ante against the hackers and started from the employees itself. The company has been firing employees suspected to have helped in the supply of inside information. The Wall Street Journal reported, in September, about Amazon suspecting data leaks and bribing of their employees. Since then the company has been removing the suspected and accused ones who might have been allegedly accessing the company’s internal data.

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