The European Commission on Friday urged online platforms to brace themselves for a fresh wave of consumer scams linked to the resurgence of COVID-19 infections in Europe.
The EU executive said rogue traders had taken advantage of the pandemic to sell products online that are falsely claimed to be COVID-19 cures or virus prevention products, and fraudsters have used offers to steal email addresses and passwords.
"We know from our earlier experience that fraudsters see this pandemic as an opportunity to trick European consumers," Reuters quotes Commissioner for Justice Didier Reynders.
"We need to be even more agile during the second wave currently hitting Europe," he added after a meeting with platform executives at which he encouraged them to join forces to strengthen their response to would-be fraudsters.
According to the Reuters report, some online platforms are liaising with the EU to stop consumer scams, including Allegro, Amazon, Alibaba/AliExpress, CDiscount, Ebay, Facebook, Google, Microsoft/Bing, Rakuten, Verizon Media/Yahoo and Wish.
Europe is currently seeing an upsurge in new COVID-19 cases, a situation that has prompted some countries to reinstate restrictive measures to curb further spread of the virus.
The continent has reported more than 11.5 million infections with a death toll exceeding 214,000, according to figures from Worldometers.