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In October 2020, Ethical Consumer viewed two articles on The Guardian website: 'EU lawmakers ask Jeff Bezos whether Amazon spies on politicians' (October 2020) and 'Trade unions urge EU to investigate Amazon effort to spy on workers' (September 2020).

The articles stated that a group of MEPs had written to Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s founder and chief executive, expressing concern that the company might be spying on politicians and targeting workers who are seeking to organise. The letter, from 37 cross-party MEPs, expressed concerns about “increasing warnings about your company’s anti-union policy”. It stated: “We are concerned about whether European trade unions, as well as local, national or European elected representatives, are affected by [the company’s] approach to ‘threat monitoring’, which aims to repress collective action and trade union organising.”

Amazon was said to have published two job posts for ‘intelligence analysts’ on its US website for roles that included investigating the threat of organised labour against the company. The job adverts also mentioned the monitoring of ‘hostile political leaders’. It grouped organised labour with hate groups and terrorism, according to the articles.

The company deleted the posts after they were first reported by Vice News and has since stated: “The job post was not an accurate description of the role – it was made in error and has since been corrected.”

The company lost half a mark under Workers' Rights and Political Activities.


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