Coronavirus: Commission urges online platforms to collaborate and continue fighting consumer scams

Commissioner Reynders is today meeting the 11 online platforms participating in the structured dialogue on tackling online consumer scams related to the coronavirus pandemic, together with consumer protection authorities. The purpose is to encourage platform operators to reinforce their preparedness to address new scams that could appear during the second wave of the pandemic and to prevent the resurgence of similar scams experienced already. Didier Reynders, Commissioner for Justice, said: “We know from our earlier experience that fraudsters see this pandemic as an opportunity to trick European consumers. We also know that working with the major online platforms is vital to protect consumers from their illegal practices. Today I encouraged the platforms to join forces and engage in a peer-to-peer exchange to further strengthen their response. We need to be even more agile during the second wave currently hitting Europe.” Following the adoption of a common position by Member States’ consumer protection authorities in March 2020, the Commission and the Consumer Protection Cooperation Network have been in regular contact with the 11 major online platforms: Allegro, Amazon, Alibaba/AliExpress, CDiscount, Ebay, Facebook, Google, Microsoft/Bing, Rakuten, Verizon Media/Yahoo and Wish to discuss new trends and business practices linked to the pandemic. As a result, the online platforms have reported the removal of hundreds of millions of illegal offers and advertisements and confirmed a steady decline in new coronavirus-related listings.