European Union antitrust regulators seeking details of Google's data practices by sending questionnaires to firms

Dec 03 2019 / By Shreyas Tanna

Antitrust regulators of the European Union want to gather details of data collection practices of Google, as per a document that was seen by Reuters. This move could signal yet further regulatory afflictions for the most famous internet search engine of the world.

Fines of over €8Bn that is equivalent to 6.9 billion pounds were handed down by the executive committee of the European Union to Alphabet unit Google in the past 2 years and gave it an order to bring changes in its business practices, followed by an investigation that revealed that the firm was abusing its dominance.

In the last week, questionnaires were sent by the European Union competition enforcer to various firms, demanding them to tell about the data practices of Google and giving them a time of the month to respond.

The emphasis is on data that is related to online advertising, local search engines, web browsers, online advertisement targeting services, as well as, login services.

The firms were asked regarding the agreements that provide data to Google or allow it to gather data by means of their services recently, and if there were being compensated for this.

Regulators were also interested to know the type of data that Google was seeking and where does it use it and how valuable that data is to firms. In the questionnaire, another major question was asked i.e. if Google, as well as, the firms were subjected to contractual terms that ban or limit the usage of the data.

In addition to this, regulators were also seeking to know whether Google had declined to provide data and was the firm affected by this.

The commission refused to pass comments on the questionnaire and it is still vague which firms were sent questionnaires.