Does Amazon spy on politicians?



Jeff Bezos wearing a suit and tie: Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. Andrej Sokolow/picture alliance via Getty Images


© Andrej Sokolow/picture alliance via Getty Images
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. Andrej Sokolow/picture alliance via Getty Images

  • European lawmakers want to know if Amazon has spied on them.
  • 37 members of European Parliament wrote to CEO Jeff Bezos about the retail giant’s moves to sniff out union activity.
  • The letter follows now-deleted Amazon job postings for staffers who would monitor threats such as “labor organizing” and “hostile political leaders.”
  • “Has Amazon already spied on Members of the European Parliament?” the lawmakers asked.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

European lawmakers have written to Amazon chief executive Jeff Bezos demanding to know: Does Amazon spy on politicians?

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In the letter dated Wednesday, 37 members of the European Parliament (MEPs) wrote expressed concerns about Amazon’s efforts to sniff out union activity within its ranks.

“We are concerned about whether European trade unions, as well as local, national, or European elected representatives, are affected by [Amazon’s] approach to ‘threat monitoring,’ which aims to repress collective action and trade union organizing,” they wrote.

The letter focuses on two job listings, which Amazon posted then removed last month, for “intelligence analysts.”

The roles appeared geared towards union-busting. The listings said applicants would be focused on “labor organizing threats against the company” and gathering material for potential legal action against labor groups protesting the company.

The MEPs note in their letter that the job listings detailed French and Spanish language skills, “suggesting that Amazon’s monitoring would be exercised in Europe.”

In both France and Spain, labor unions have resulted in Amazon workers going on strike, and in France unions forced Amazon warehouses to close for one month over safety concerns relating to the coronavirus pandemic.

In the US, Amazon has been more successful in tamping down on union activity. In Europe, Business Insider