A Beijing resident surnamed Wang sued Baidu demanding compensation, alleging the search engine's results led her to a scam customer service number and caused losses of 45,000 yuan ($6,643.54), according to a statement on the Haidian court's official website on Monday.
According to the statement, Wang searched for WeChat's customer service number through Baidu's search service after finding her chat records had been mistakenly deleted on WeChat. She clicked on a website that appeared in the search results and dialed the phone number on the website. The person on the phone claimed that she was an employee of WeChat and said that only after Wang cleared the balance stored in her WeChat could she recover her chat history.
But the "customer service" representative could no longer be reached after Wang transferred 45,000 yuan - all of her balance - to the person, the statement read.
Wang said that as a network service provider, Baidu has the responsibility to check and ensure the quality of its search results and provide objective, fair and authentic search results for its users.
Wang believes that Baidu should compensate her losses and bear tort liability.
The case was accepted by the Haidian court and is under trial currently.
The Baidu search engine had around 70 percent of the domestic market share in terms of revenue in December 2018, according to a report from domestic news site sohu.com in February, citing data from Statcounter.
When searching "WeChat customer service" through Baidu on Monday, the Global Times found that the top search result was marked as official and verified by Baidu, while a warning that said "the following search results might have risk of fraud" flashed before results.
Baidu had not responded to a request by the Global Times for comments as of Monday.