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EU to investigate Google over data collection practices

Foo Yun Chee, reporting for Reuters, said the questionnaires for the latest investigation showed that the EU’s focus was on “data related to local search services, online advertising, online ad targeting services, login services, web browsers and others”. The new investigation suggests that the EU is not yet done with its scrutiny of Google, which has already resulted in more than €8bn (£6.8bn) of fines. A 2017 investigation into Google Shopping resulted in a fine of €2.4bn; in 2018, anticompetitive practices involving Google’s Android smartphone operating system were the basis of a €4.3bn fine; and those were followed in 2019 with a €1.5bn fine over advertising violations. In the latter violations, the competition commission has placed increasing emphasis on the contracts Google has signed with third parties – restrictions which are not traditionally a part of antitrust enforcement, but which are widely seen as crucial to how companies such as Google maintain their lead.

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