Economy

Amazon 'reviewing' its site after report found suggestions of bomb ingredients

Amazon 'reviewing' its site after report found suggestions of bomb ingredients”

The U.K.'s Channel 4 News on Monday reported that Amazon's "frequently bought together" algorithm revealed to shoppers ingredients used to assemble explosives, such as ball bearings, remote detonators and chemicals to make black powder.

Though the "frequently bought together" items on Amazon aren't illegal on their own, the Channel 4 News report noted that there have been successful prosecutions in the United Kingdom against people who buy chemicals that can be combined to make a bomb.

The issue reportedly arose through Amazon's handy "Frequently Bought Together" feature, which the retailer uses to boost suggestive sales (and impulse buys), and many consumers do find the tool to be a useful one.

The items are innocent on their own but can be put together to create potentially deadly chemical explosives.

The New Daily chose not to name or picture the labels for the items.

Amazon said in a statement that all the products sold on its website "must adhere to our selling guidelines and we only sell products that comply with United Kingdom laws".

Channel 4 dug deeper after noticing the algorithm's suggestions - black powder (gunpowder) and thermite together - and the broadcaster easily tossed 45 kilograms of black powder into a basket despite United Kingdom laws that place restrictions on any private citizen purchasing more than 100 grams of the stuff in one sitting.

On Tuesday, a spokesperson for the Attorney-General's Department told The New Daily that businesses selling chemical products "should have security measures in place to identify suspicious transactions". The attack involved a bomb inside of a plastic bag, which was placed in a bucket aboard a train, and was detonated during the rush hour in the morning.

Suspicious transactions of chemical products should be reported to the Australian National Security Hotline on 1800 123 400 or to police.



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