Google Starts To Comply With EU Antitrust Order

Google has offered up plans and a glimpse of how it will seek to comply with antitrust directives from the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), Reuters reported Tuesday.

The plans center around behavior in which the internet giant favored its own shopping platform over rivals, giving prime search displays to its own displays, the newswire stated. The company had been ordered by EU regulators to not only come up with a detailed plan by Tuesday (a deadline it met) but also stop those practices by Sept. 28.

That GDPR deadline, should it be missed, would bring some financial bite to the Alphabet-owned Google, with penalty payments in the offing of as much as 5 percent of the company’s global sales volume. Based on trailing figures, in 2016, that could be at least $12 million daily, as estimated from a top line of $90 billion.

As has been widely reported, the company was slapped with a $2.7 billion fine this summer.

An unnamed spokesperson for the EU said in a statement to Reuters that “Google will continue to be under an obligation to keep the Commission informed of its actions by submitting periodic reports,” and said that a proposal had indeed been received.

The legal wrangling may not be over yet, as Alphabet’s Google also faces a possible fine from EU regulators over practices tied to Android, its mobile operating system.

Reuters also noted that ICOMP, a lobbying group — where some digital mapping firms such as Hot Map and at least one online search enterprise, TradeComet, and other Google rivals are members — said that Google’s proposal should be out in the open. The head of ICOMP, Michael Weber, said that Google’s proposals had the far-reaching ability to “affect everyone in the online and mobile worlds, so they must be made public for evaluation.”


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