Incident 435: Coupang Allegedly Tweaked Search Algorithms to Boost Own Products

Description: Coupang was alleged in internal reports tampering its search algorithms to prioritize exposure of its own products, which potentially violated Korea's Fair Trade Act.


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Alleged: Coupang developed and deployed an AI system, which harmed Coupang suppliers and Coupang customers.

Incident Stats

Incident ID
Report Count
Incident Date
Khoa Lam
Coupang investigated by FTC over accusations of meddling with algorithms · 2021

South Korea's antitrust watchdog has launched a probe into e-commerce giant Coupang over the accusation that the company has meddled with algorithms to prioritize its own products, according to multiple reports on Sunday.

According to the r…

Coupang probed by FTC for alleged tampering of algorithm on its platform · 2021

Coupang was reportedly investigated by South Korea's Fair Trade Commission due to allegations that the e-commerce company tampered with algorithms so it can prioritize its own products. This was reported by insiders this weekend.

According …

Coupang faces probe over alleged manipulation of search algorithms · 2021

South Korea's Coupang is being investigated over allegations it manipulated search algorithms to prioritise its own products over those of suppliers, according to industry figures with knowledge of the probe.

The Korea Fair Trade Commission…

Coupang fined $2.8 mil. for unfair business practices · 2021
Yi Whan-woo post-incident response

Coupang has been fined 3.29 billion won ($2.81 million) by the country's top antitrust regulator, Thursday, for its alleged involvement in unfair business practices and interfering in the business of vendors.

The Korea Fair Trade Commission…


A "variant" is an incident that shares the same causative factors, produces similar harms, and involves the same intelligent systems as a known AI incident. Rather than index variants as entirely separate incidents, we list variations of incidents under the first similar incident submitted to the database. Unlike other submission types to the incident database, variants are not required to have reporting in evidence external to the Incident Database. Learn more from the research paper.