Brushing - Fake Amazon Reviews on Verified Purchase

Have you heard of “brushing” before? This is a method that scammers use on Amazon to write 5-star reviews with a “verified purchase” ad under their products. Products are ordered as gifts for others, some cheap stuff is sent instead and the rating is written after successful delivery. The interesting thing about it: the dispatch takes place to people who are not privy to this matter. So if you receive Amazon parcels once or even regularly that you did not order, you may be passively participating in the brushing fraud.

I received an Amazon package that I did not order - why? Anyone wondering this may be involuntarily involved in brushing the Amazon fraud. This shows fake 5-star reviews with a "verified purchase".
I received an Amazon package that I did not order - why? Anyone wondering this may be involuntarily involved in brushing the Amazon fraud. This shows fake 5-star reviews with a "verified purchase".

Brushing - Amazon reviews through fake orders

Actually, you should be able to trust that the real buyer of a product is behind a customer review on Amazon. Especially when the red and orange lettering “Verified Purchase” is under the title. This is exactly what should be available as a test option for possible fake reviews. If an Amazon rating does not say “Verified Purchase”, the information should be handled critically.

Of course, retailers who want their products to be well rated at any price also know this. They act as so-called "brusher" or engage other people as such. The brusher then order the product in question as a gift for a stranger, the retailer instead sends a cheap product under the label created, the package is delivered and the purchase is considered verified. The recipients do not know who (apart from Amazon) the parcels are from.

Media reports on reviews fraud on Amazon

You can watch a current report from CNN on Youtube (or embedded at the bottom of this post). In the report, two women from the USA have their say who regularly receive parcels from Amazon that they have not ordered themselves. In addition, experts talk about "brushing" and the exact procedure. The video was published on January 23.01.2021, 2018. However, the method of scamming Amazon verified purchases isn't all that new. As early as XNUMX, for example. Lifehacker and Clark this method on. 

If you search further, you will find one CBS report dated February 2018, which suggests that such fake orders and shipments have been used for fake reviews since at least 2017. So if you have been receiving parcels and parcels for several years (or only recently) even though you did not order the content, then you may be a passive part of the scam known as brushing. But that is not to your disadvantage. You are not liable to prosecution by accepting or opening the parcel.

I do not receive Amazon packages that have been ordered! What can I do?

If you look through the various reports and guides on the subject, there are some tips and assistance that repeat themselves. In addition to the note that you do not have to worry about legal issues if you receive something that has not been ordered, these are the following points:

  • Contact Amazon with all the information that can be found on the shipping label on the package - perhaps the fraudulent dealers can be identified in this way
  • You can keep the received products, give them away, sell them or whatever - in most cases Amazon does not seem to be interested in taking them back
  • For security, set a new password for your Amazon account and check your payments - in addition to brushing, there are also cases of fraud with hacked accounts
  • The brusher probably didn't get your address from a data leak, hack or the like - maybe it is visible somewhere, for example in the phone book or in the imprint of your website
  • If you receive illegal items (weapons, drugs, etc.), you should contact the police immediately - such a case is very unlikely

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4 Responses to “Brushing – Fake Amazon reviews on verified purchase”

  1. Interesting article!
    Unfortunately, I haven't become a victim of "brushing" yet...
    🇧🇷 🇧🇷
    But unbelievable that you can't even rely on “Verified Purchase” these days.

    1. Yes, it would be nice if you got iPhones, MacBooks and so on from time to time. : D
      But verified purchase is already diligently bypassed. I myself always get emails from some Chinese shops that want me to buy the products and rate them with 5 stars and then they would send me the costs + 5 euros via PayPal. This is not visible to Amazon and so the rating appears like that of a real customer.

      So it's always a good idea to read a few more reviews ... sometimes they seem strange. For example, if someone rates a breakdown spray and writes that they haven't had a breakdown yet, but awards it 5 stars, then one wonders what it's supposed to do.

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