A raunchy social media post showing a woman browsing for furniture half naked without wearing underpants has set Chinese social media alight.
The original post, which first appeared on June 29, claimed the unidentified woman was shopping in an IKEA store in Beijing.
The Swedish furniture giant has denied the allegation and reported the incident to police, according to Huanqiu.com, an affiliation to People’s Daily Online.
The pictures were uploaded to Weibo, China’s equivalent to Twitter, by a user named ‘wu hou kuang shui_silent’, who wrote: ‘I finally understand why you Beijing residents like shopping in IKEA…’
The user shared two pictures showing the back of the woman in close distance.
In both images, she was wearing a grey top with no trousers or underpants.
The woman appeared to be shopping in a furniture store.
A sign in the picture read ‘foam mattresses’ while people were seen caring bright yellow shopping bags.
It was not clear whether or not the woman knew other people were taking picture of her.
The post has since been removed by the user who has more than 108,000 followers on Weibo.
The Beijing police authority demanded the pictured be deleted on June 30 after they became widely shared, according to Huanqiu.
Some Chinese web users suspected the pictures had been used to promote IKEA’s Beijing stores.
The furniture giant denied the claim through a statement released on June 30 through its official Weibo account.
The statement also said: ‘We also hope that all consumers observe social morality and maintain social justice and social order.’
The company said they had reported the incident to the police.
The pictures have set Chinese social media alight and have been widely shared – even after the original pictures were taken down.
Some users seemed to be convinced that IKEA was involved in the matter.
User ‘Chun nuan hua kai’ was one of them, who wrote: ‘[Is IKEA] trying to use this to cover the fact that their chests of drawers have not been recalled in China?’
‘Didi Zhang’ said: ‘This is a public place and it was in Beijing. It would be very easy to find out the truth because all stores and roads have surveillance cameras.’
However, other condemned the woman for her vulgar behaviour.
‘Luo bo zai jia’ commented: ‘Some people can do crazy things in order to be famous.’
Last July, fashion brand Uniqlo became caught in a sex-tape scandal in China after a video showing a young couple having sex inside their fitting room was widely shared online.
The Japanese firm denied the speculation. The man who uploaded the pictures to the internet was arrested by the police.
However many Chinese web users said they still believed it was a marketing campaign from Uniqlo.