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EU Orders Meta To Hand Over Documents In Antitrust Probe

 |  May 24, 2023

On Wednesday, Meta’s attempt to withhold numerous documents was unsuccessful as EU authorities investigate the parent company of Facebook and Instagram for potential anticompetitive behavior.

The European Commission requested documents from the tech giant, which they claimed were too broad and didn’t meet data privacy standards. However, the General Court of the Court of Justice of the European Union ordered Meta to comply, reported Reuters.

The ruling made on Wednesday in Luxembourg states that the European Commission’s requests were deemed necessary and appropriate.

During the period of March through November in 2019, the commission made several requests for Meta’s internal documents regarding the company’s use of data from its apps. Meta partially complied with the requests, however, it also contested some of the demands that were deemed too extensive.

Related: EU-US To Create New Data Transfer Agreement In Wake Of Meta Fine

Brussels requested Meta to provide all internal documents related to specific search queries, such as “big question,” “for free,” and “not good for us,” among others. However, Meta claims that the commission asked for documents related to 2,500 terms and that many of these terms would result in hundreds of documents that are completely unrelated to the investigation.

The commission reduced their requests after mediation, but Meta filed a complaint with the court in 2020 stating that Brussels’ demands were excessive.

Meta’s legal team referred to the EU’s investigation as an expansive search, comparing it to a fishing trawler collecting everything on the ocean floor, during a hearing in June of 2022.