Amazon is testing seller verification via video

A new method to stop fraud on marketplace

To keep counterfeits and frauds away from their marketplace, Amazon is currently testing a new way of verification of new sellers: their identity is supposed to be proved via video chat.

Is this new method working and if yes, how reliable is it?


 How does Amazon’s video verification work?

According to Amazon, the identification via video does not replace the current process of verification. Much more, it functions as an addition. China, the US, the UK, and Japan are currently testing the pilot project; more than 1000 new sellers have already made it through the new process.  


What does this new process look like? 

Via video chat, Amazon employees check a new seller’s identity and documents. By this, frauds are to be recognised early and not even be permitted to sell on marketplace. This is supposed to battle the issue of fake accounts and sellers who register repeatedly under different names. For this, Amazon is using its own program, Chime

Originally, these meetings were planned to take place in person. Due to the pandemic caused by the Coronavirus, Amazon switched to video calls (for now).


(Which documents are required to start a seller account on Amazon? - Source: amazon.com


Amazon themselves have not yet published information considering this pilot project. The video chat is neither mentioned on the list of required documents nor in the explanations considering Amazon’s verification process. 


 Background: Why is Amazon testing this video method?

Amazon’s current approach against trademark infringements, counterfeits, frauds and the selling of dangerous goods does not seem to be sufficient. This caused some renowned brands and producers, including Nike, to stop their direct selling through Amazon.com. 


Amazon themselves have admitted to these weaknesses in their annual report to the “United States Securities and Exchange Commission” from 2018. The US Government furthermore added some marketplaces to their list of  “Notorious Markets” - including marketplaces in Canada, the UK, Germany, and India. Amazon seems to have recognised that, in order to preserve their reputation and trust - from both sellers’ and buyers’ perspectives, they need to improve on their control of marketplaces.


But - does the new method guarantee success and reliability?


Can the identification via video chat solve the problem?

Amazon have not yet released a statement considering the scope and a possible expansion of the new method. Whether the identity check via video chat will become a standard, or even face-to-face meetings will be required remains to be seen.


In theory, frauds will not be even permitted as sellers through the new verification process. Thus, instead of finding and blocking them later on, Amazon stops them earlier. We appreciate every effort by Amazon that helps to keep frauds and counterfeits away from their platform.


What we can do to protect your brand

We can tell you whether your brand is sold on different Amazon marketplaces. Furthermore, we can help you finding and stopping trademark infringements and the selling of counterfeit products on amazon and many more platforms.


You can rely on our long-standing and successful procedures in the area of Sales Tracking, Online Monitoring, and the conducting of test purchases to get a detailed analysis of established online marketplaces.


Have you already encountered counterfeits or non-authorised sellers? Do you wish to gain a detailed insight into selling activities of your brand? Do not hesitate to contact us