In recent years, Silicon Valley and Big Tech has been under increasing antitrust scrutiny. An investigation by state attorneys general into Google’s market power could be announced as soon as next week.
According to the Washington Post, this investigation includes more than half of the states in the country, and could be unveiled at a September 9 news conference. Google is currently the primary target, but the entire or a subset of the group could open additional probes into Amazon, Facebook, and other tech companies.
Beyond antitrust, the exact areas under investigation are unknown at this time. AGs from Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas have been looking into how Google handles personal information, as well as alleged “search bias.”
Another unknown is whether the Department of Justice will join the states on Monday. According to WaPo, some of the attorneys general met with Justice Department officials over the summer.
The agency’s top antitrust official, Makan Delrahim, later said at a conference in August that the federal government is coordinating with state leaders, which he numbered at more than a dozen, but declined to offer further details about the agency’s plans.
It emerged in late May that the DOJ will be responsible for looking into Google after a deal with the Federal Trade Commission over jurisdiction. The federal government is reportedly looking into Google’s Search dominance and “other businesses.” It would follow several investigations by the European Commission into Google Shopping, Android, and AdSense.
More about antitrust:
- Apple, Google, others, may also face antitrust investigations by US states
- U.S. Justice Department planning Google antitrust investigation over Search, more