The issue of price-gouging on online platforms has become a hot topic among law enforcement agencies, officials and lawmakers as panicked consumers look to stock up on essential items during the outbreak.
Nearly 4,000 accounts were suspended by Amazon over the past week for engaging in "coronavirus-based price gouging".
The steps include triggering price-gouging protections prior to emergency declarations in a state, being proactive in setting policies and restrictions on sellers instead of playing catch up and creating a "fair pricing" page where consumers can report incidents.
"These are just a few potential solutions, and we hope your company will put its considerable technological prowess to work.to better protect your customers", the attorneys general wrote in letters to the companies. "Price gouging investigations are research and document-intensive and take time to build, and while we are committed to bringing to justice anyone violating Florida's price gouging laws, right now deterring and preventing outrageous price increases is our top priority".
According to a report by Business Insider, Amazon is taking action to ensure that third-party sellers do not engage in price gouging during the Wuhan coronavirus pandemic. This continued even as the companies cracked down, removing or even banning listings of particular products.
The operator of the largest US online marketplace said it has pulled well over half a million offers and suspended more than 3,900 selling accounts in the USA for violating its fair pricing policies.
Facebook said it has removed ads and sale listings for high-demand items including coronavirus testing kits.
The government won't go after a family with a big supply of toilet paper at home, U.S. Atty.