Amazon has forbidden more than one million products which claim to defend against the coronavirus – or even cure it.

The online retailer said it had also eliminated “tens of thousands” of high-priced health products from corrupt sellers.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) voiced concern about some deceptive Amazon listings earlier this month, including false treatments.

The virus, which causes Covid-19, has killed around 2,800 people worldwide.

The WHO said false coronavirus claims online were causing mass misperception and advised tech giants to fight the spread of misinformation.

A search for “coronavirus” on Amazon showed results for disinfectant wipes, face masks and newly-published books on viral infections, exposing how some sellers are benefitting from the health crisis.

It also suggested results for vitamin C boosters – a fake cure for the virus that has been extensively disseminated online.

Amazon has not delivered a list of those products it says it has removed, but a search for “coronavirus” on the online site offers many products that are still being sold at strangely high prices.

In one instance, a 50-piece stack of surgical masks from one seller cost over £170, while a popular substitute of the same product is on sale for about £36. Even that cheaper product has still risen intensely in price since early January when it cost less than £10.

Several of those products are not even fit for purpose, such as disposable surgical or dust masks, rather than commended protective equipment.

A three-pack of a popular brand of hand sanitizing gel cost between £10-15 until early January, when it rocketed to £50. It now sells for more than £30.

“There is no place for price extorting on Amazon,” a spokeswoman told Reuters, mentioning to the practice of hiking up prices of goods to unreasoningly high levels because of a rise in demand.

She quoted company policy which allow Amazon to take down products that “hurt customer trust”, including when pricing “is considerably higher than recent prices offered on or off Amazon”. exposing

The company will continue to check the site for price spikes, she added.



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