Big techs to be monitored by US consumer regulator task force

Wednesday 27 February 2019 11:04 CET | News

The FTC’s Bureau of Competition will put some 17 staff attorneys on the task force, aiming to consult on tech-related merger reviews, according to Reuters.

Moreover, the task force will focus on investigations and reviews of consummated tech deals, and will closely examine technology markets to “ensure consumers benefit from free and fair competition” FTC representatives said.

For instance, Facebook, already under investigation by the FTC, is accused of violating a 2011 consent decree regarding privacy by allowing the personal information of 87 million users to end up in the hands of Cambridge Analytica. Advocacy groups, such as the Electronic Privacy Information Center, have urged the FTC to require Facebook to unwind its purchases of Instagram, used to share photos, and WhatsApp, a private messaging app.

The App Association, which represents app makers, said it looked forward to the task force’s work.

Also, the Retail Industry Leaders Association, which represents brick and mortar stores whose businesses have been disrupted by online retailers, said creation of the task force will “bring needed scrutiny to the relatively few technology platforms that control a growing share of modern commerce.”

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Keywords: big techs, regulation, task force, US, merger reviews, commerce, competition
Countries: World