Jack Quann
Jack Quann

13.39 19 Mar 2020


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Consumer authorities are warning people shopping online over fake products, which allege to prevent or cure the coronavirus.

Since the start of the outbreak, there has been a rise in rogue traders selling these false products online.

The European Commission says these include a number of goods such as masks, caps, and hand sanitizers.

"Such traders are exploiting the current situation to sell their products at very high prices claiming that stocks are running low for example, and thus misleading EU consumers", it says.

A number of platforms, such as Amazon and Facebook, have already taken action.

However both the commission and the network of national consumer protection authorities at EU level are also working to combat this.

They are now actively sharing information and working together on a consistent approach to tackle such practices.

They also aim to raise consumers' awareness about these practices.

Didier Reynders is the commissioner for justice and consumers.

He said: "We will not accept that traders play on consumers' fears caused by the COVID-19 outbreak in the EU.

"Some platforms, such as Amazon and Facebook have voluntarily taken action against such publicity.

"Consumers' organization are stepping up their work. This is the way to go.

"I urge all actors, including online marketplaces and media hosting platforms to carry on helping us fight against such predatory behavior."

EU consumer authorities are also preparing a guidance to help better identify such practices.

This guidance will help to coordinate action between national authorities, traders and platforms - and advise on how to eradicate false claims quickly.

The guidance will be made public in the next few days.


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Amazon Coronavirus Cure Covid-19 Didier Reynders EU Consumers European Commission Facebook Fake Products False Online Shoppers

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