FRAUD ALERT: Amazon Stealing From Customers!?

( – The Federal Trade Commission has launched a lawsuit against Amazon, claiming the retail giant engaged in a long-term effort to trick customers into subscribing to its Prime program.

Amazon Prime, which was started in 2005, offers perks such as faster shipping, free delivery, and returns. It has over 200 million subscribers worldwide and costs $14.99 monthly ($139 annually).

The FTC complaint filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington argues that Amazon’s patterns for signing up new Prime clients violated the FTC Act and the Restore Online Shoppers’ Confidence Act, Newsmax reports.

The federal regulator accuses the e-commerce conglomerate of making it harder for consumers to cancel their Prime subscriptions once they have enrolled in the program through “dark patterns,” deceptive designs.

The FTC found that the option to buy products on Amazon without signing up for Prime was made more complex in many cases.

In some instances, users were shown a button for finish transactions which also enrolled them into Prime without informing them about it.

The FTC, whose chief Lina Khan is deemed a “Big Tech critic,” argued Amazon’s management either resisted or delayed instituting changes to allow consumers to cancel Prime subscriptions more easily.

The agency announced its lawsuit in a release, stating its complaint contained information supporting its accusations against Amazon.

It also said the online retailer has been trying to hamper its investigation into Prime, which started in 2021.

“Amazon tricked and trapped people into recurring subscriptions without their consent, not only frustrating users but also costing them significant money,” Khan declared.

“These manipulative tactics harm consumers and law-abiding businesses alike,” she added.

In 2021, Amazon, yet to comment on the FTC lawsuit, unsuccessfully insisted that the regulator’s chairwoman remove herself from antitrust probes into its business.

The company claimed Khan could not be impartial due to her previous public criticism of its market power.

Before her appointment by President Joe Biden in 2021, Khan became known “on the antitrust scene” in 2017. At the time, as a Yale law student, she an essay called “Amazon’s Antitrust Paradox.”

Several weeks ago, Amazon agreed to a $25 million settlement over accusations its Alexa voice assistant violated a child privacy law.