Cyber criminals exploit Amazon India platform to sell 2,000 kilos of marijuana. Amazon executives summoned by police

A few days ago, police in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh arrested two individuals in possession of 20 kilos of marijuana ready for sale. Apparently, these people had a seller account on Amazon through which they allegedly sold Stevia leaves, a popular sugar substitute, which was actually a front for the sale of cannabis.

The authorities in charge of the case believe that, before the arrest, these individuals sold about 1,000 kilos of marijuana, obtaining almost $150,000 USD in profits by abusing the capabilities of the largest delivery platform in the world.

Faced with such a situation, the authorities summoned to testify some representatives of Amazon in India, arguing that this platform has a wide capacity in terms of technology, so it is difficult to believe that they could not detect this criminal activity. Manoj Singh, a local police official, mentions: “Amazon has the power of artificial intelligence, so it’s a very important thing that’s happening on its platform. The company was involved in the delivery of this drug at multiple levels, from logistical support to delivery.”

A couple of days later, authorities were already filing charges against Amazon employees in India, although so far there is no evidence to suggest that their employees were directly involved with this criminal activity. Singh also ordered a detailed inspection of some Amazon delivery centers in Madhya Pradesh as part of the investigation, hoping to find all the details of the case.

After a couple of days plagued by rumors, Amazon finally issued a statement mentioning that the company does not tolerate in any way crimes and malicious use of its platform, so they will be cooperating with the authorities during the investigation of this incident. Still, Amazon denies that its executives in India have been subpoenaed to testify in this case or that they have participated in the drug sales operation.

This is not the first time a criminal group has managed to operate on Amazon. In 2018, it was reported that an alleged naturist products company was selling marijuana on Amazon in the UK, prompting the company to implement new security mechanisms for the sale of its products through this service.

To learn more about information security risks, malware variants, vulnerabilities and information technologies, feel free to access the International Institute of Cyber Security (IICS) websites.