Italian watchdog investigates Google over alleged advertising market abuse

Google

Italy’s antitrust authority is exploring Google for alleged abuse of its dominant position in the Italian online display advertising market, it has said.

The investigation follows a complaint filed by Italian digital advertising lobby group IAB last year, also adds to regulatory scrutiny the Silicon Valley tech giant is facing global.

The watchdog said it suspects Google of utilizing enormous amounts of data collected through its applications to stop rival operators from competing effectively. It said it completed inspections of some Google offices on Tuesday.

A Google spokesman in Italy stated in an emailed statement the company was working constructively together with the Italian government.

He added that the Google policy changes on which the watchdog was focusing were partly aimed at squaring European Union privacy law with how its advertising tools get the job done.

She said the tech giant’s “unrivalled position” hit “publishers and, ultimately, their readers as less advertising revenue leads to less investment in journalism”.

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The Italian internet marketing market generated revenue of 3.3 billion euros (approximately $3.9 billion) last year, with screen advertising, including banner ads, accounting for nearly 37%.

The team at Platform Executive hope you have enjoyed this news article. Initial reporting via our official content partners at Thomson Reuters. Reporting by Elvira Pollina and Giulia Segreti. Editing by David Goodman and Jan Harvey.

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