Google's data collection being investigated by EU antitrust regulators

Cornelia Mascio
Dicembre 3, 2019

Another question asked whether Google and the companies were subjected to contractual terms that prohibit or limit the use of the data.

The EU probe comes less than a year after the search giant was hit with a $1.7 billion fine from the European Commission in March for "abusive" online ad practices.

Looker Data Sciences offers cloud-based services that allow customers to gain business-related insights from masses of data, and visualise them in accessible formats. This move was apparently in an effort to gather more information before the launch of an official investigation.

There is already a separate investigation looking at local and travel search competition in Europe. Other cases included a 2017 investigation into Google Shopping, and an anticompetitive practices case in 2018.

At the state level, Google is being investigated by a partnership of 48 us states along with the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, led by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, over the company's practices.

The concern is that Google is doing the same that it has already been found guilty of - and fined billions of euros by the European Union - in the smartphone, comparison shopping and online advertising markets: using its market dominance to force companies to operate on its terms, which invariably shields it from competition.

European antitrust regulators still haven't stopped exploring their work on Google's platforms.

Google said its measures had proved effective and were sending traffic to third-party merchants. The competition commission has also sent out questionnaires to firms working with Google, asking them about all the data sharing agreements they have made.

One of the potential unintended consequences of GDPR has been that Google and Facebook benefit while smaller companies without their multiple properties and expansive networks are disadvantaged.

Ever since the Facebook / Cambridge Analytica scandal, communications watchdogs around the world have been vigorously investigating the world's biggest technology companies, trying to make sure they don't abuse their position at the expense and privacy of their users.

Altre relazioniGrafFiotech

Discuti questo articolo

Segui i nostri GIORNALE