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Ikea 'spied' on angry clients in France

Clea Caulcutt · 14 Mar 2012, 10:00

Published: 14 Mar 2012 10:53 GMT+01:00
Updated: 14 Mar 2012 10:00 GMT+01:00

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Furniture giant Ikea has been accused of spying on dissatisfied clients in France, following allegations that the Swedish company snooped on its French staff. Police have carried out a search at Ikea's French head office.

"No company has ever treated us so badly," wrote a woman known as Hanna F. in a letter of complaint to Ikea, French website Mediapart reveals. Hanna had bought a kitchen and beds for her country house at an Ikea shop in Evry in the outskirts of Paris.

Ikea delivered the items two months after the agreed date, meaning Hanna and her family had to stay in a bed and breakfast near their home in the French department of Finistère.

Hanna wrote a letter of complaint to ikea asking for a refund of the extra cost. But what Hanna did not suspect was that the company then allegedly started an investigation into Hanna’s background.

According to Mediapart, Ikea contacted a private detective to find out details about the dissatisfied customer.

Ikea allegedly investigated another client known as Jérôme P., a real estate agent, who complained about a faulty wardrobe he had bought.

On Friday, French police searched the headquarters of the company in France and the home of the employee responsible for Ikea’s risk management policy, following allegations of illegal surveillance.

Employees working for Ikea have filed a complaint against the company for allegedly spying on employees.

Story continues below…

The management of the company in France said it was taking the accusations "very seriously".

"The respect of privacy is amongst the most strongly held values of the group and we strongly disapprove of any actions which call that into question," the company said in a statement.

Clea Caulcutt (news.france@thelocal.com)

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