Amazon Inexplicably Shut Down Hundreds, Possibly Thousands of Prime Accounts

Apr 9, 2018 at 11:56 a.m. ET
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Hundreds, possibly thousands, of Amazon Prime members were left furious after they were locked out of their accounts over the past week. And they have no idea why.

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According to Business Insider, affected customers were unable to access previously purchased e-books, video, preloaded gift cards and orders in the mail and also unable to sign into and use devices like Amazon's Kindle and Fire TV.

Starting last week, those with mysteriously blocked accounts flocked to social media to complain about their experience and the lack of explanation about their accounts were closed. Some are even threatening lawsuits against Amazon.

One customer in particular, Tina White from Massachusetts, told Business Insider she realized her account was closed on March 29; and since then, she has talked to Amazon representatives every day for hours.

"They told lie after lie every single day," White said. She continued to say that the only explanation she received from representatives is that she violated "Amazon policy" or "review policy." That's it.

White was far from the only customer to complain.

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People have taken to Facebook, as well. In fact, there are at least two Facebook groups created specifically about the Amazon closures. One called Amazon Account Closure Discussion Group has over 3,300 members, while another called Class Action Against Amazon — with nearly 900 members — pledges to file a class-action lawsuit. "Amazon has progressed from allowing us to leave reviews for a discount to closing our accounts with [gift card] balances and credits and items needing returns and/or exchanged," the group description states. "They have in effect stolen our money. Unfair business practices. [It's] time to address all our grievances with the company Amazon."

Amazon provided a statement to Business Insider, stating: "Customer trust is one of Amazon's top priorities. To protect that trust, we take a number of actions, including closing accounts that have violated our policies. If a customer has a question about their account, we recommend they contact customer service so we can investigate and take appropriate action."

And on April 6, an Amazon spokesperson told Fortune: "Amazon has taken action against bad actors and those who have violated our community rules. If any customers believe their account has been closed in error, we encourage them to contact us directly so we can review their account and take appropriate action."

Amazon hasn't spoken out about the closures since. In the meantime, if you're one of the hundreds, maybe thousands, with a now-deactivated account, may the odds be ever in your favor and good luck with customer service.

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