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Advocacy Groups Warn Against Google’s Fitbit Deal

 |  July 2, 2020

Twenty advocacy groups from the United States, Europe, Latin America and elsewhere signed a statement Wednesday urging regulators to be wary ofGoogle’s $2.1 billion bid for fitness tracker company Fitbit because of privacy and competition concerns.

The 20 organizations – which include the US-based Public Citizen, Access Now from Europe and the Brazilian Institute of Consumer Defense – argued that the deal would expand the already considerable clout in digital markets of Alphabet’s Google, reported Reuters. 

Acquiring Fitbit would give Google such intimate information about users as how many steps they take daily, the quality of their sleep and their heart rates. 

“Past experience shows that regulators must be very wary of any promises made by merging parties about restricting the use of the acquisition target’s data. Regulators must assume that Google will in practice utilize the entirety of Fitbit’s currently independent unique, highly sensitive data set in combination with its own,” the groups said.