In September, Amazon confirmed that some of its marketplace sellers had bribed Amazon employees to delete negative reviews or to obtain proprietary information like sales data or customer e-mail addresses, following a report in The Wall Street Journal. Now, according to FT, Amazon has fired at least one employee.
FT says that the employee had provided customer e-mail addresses to a seller. Amazon confirmed the news, saying that “individual responsible for this incident has been terminated from their position, and we are supporting law enforcement in their prosecution.” The affected customers have since been notified, and Amazon says that no other customer information was leaked to outside parties.
One such affected customer forwarded the e-mail they received to The Verge, which notes that the employee has been dismissed, but also says that the third-party seller in question has been banned from Amazon’s marketplace. The customer noted that Amazon didn’t provide details on which third-party seller received their information.
The WSJ’s report revealed that third-party sellers would use middlemen to locate Amazon employees, who in turn offered them money for internal information, in order to gain an edge against their competitors. Amazon noted that it was investigating and had put into place ““systems to restrict and audit what employees can access.”
Updated October 6th 3:40 PM ET: Updated to include information provided by Amazon’s e-mail notifying customers of the incident.