The European Commission opens a probe into Google’s advertising unit a few weeks after it was fined by French authorities. Google’s advertising unit is going against several EU regulations and is paying the price for it.
EU Opens Probe Into Google
The European Commission (EC) announced earlier today that it has officially launched an investigation into Google’s advertising unit. According to the announcement, Google is under investigation for favoring its own online display ad technology services. Hence, breaching the antitrust rules put in place by the commission.
European Commission Executive Vice President Margrethe Vestager said, “Google collects data to be used for targeted advertising purposes, it sells advertising space and also acts as an online advertising intermediary. So Google is present at almost all levels of the supply chain for online display advertising.”
The commission is concerned that the search engine giant is making it harder for rival online advertising services to compete in the ad sector. The European Commission exec said as part of the probe, they would be looking at the restrictions Google has put in place to undermine the efforts of advertisers, publishers and other third parties. The measures that limit their ability to access data and other user information would also be looked at.
Google Fined For Similar Offence In France
The probe comes a few weeks after Google was fined $267 million by the French Competition Authority for abusing its dominance in the online advert sector. The French regulator accused the search engine giant of using its position in the market to unfairly send business to its own service and discriminate against competitors in the online advertising industry.
Google has already committed to ending some of its selfish practices. However, it is unclear if it has implemented any of its suggestions. The regulations want to ensure they create a level playing field for all advertisers and allow publishers to adequately leverage their advertising spaces.
At the time of this report, Google’s stock price is up by 1.4%, and it is trading at $2,436 per share on the NASDAQ stock exchange.