UK, EU competition watchdogs investigate Facebook over possible anticompetitive conduct

·2-min read
Representative image
Representative image

London [UK], June 4 (ANI/Sputnik): The UK and the European Union competition regulators both announced on Friday that they are investigating Facebook to determine whether the online social media platform has unfairly used the data obtained from its advertising and single sign-on to gain advantage over competitors.

"We intend to thoroughly investigate Facebook's use of data to assess whether its business practices are giving it an unfair advantage in the online dating and classified ad sectors," Andrea Coscelli, chief executive of the UK's Competition and Market Authority (CMA) said in a statement.

The announcement from the UK regulator came almost simultaneously with the one issued by the European Commission with the same purpose, so Coscelli said that the CMA will seek to work closely with its European counterpart.

"We will be working closely with the European Commission as we each investigate these issues, as well as continuing our coordination with other agencies to tackle these global issues," the UK official said.

Facebook's digital classified advertising service, called Facebook Marketplace, allows its users to advertise, sell and buy good, but the UK and EU competition watchdogs want to know whether the social media platform has unfairly used data gathered from advertisers to compete with them.

"Facebook collects vast troves of data on the activities of users of its social network and beyond, enabling it to target specific customer groups. We will look in detail at whether this data gives Facebook an undue competitive advantage in particular on the online classified ads sector, where people buy and sell goods every day, and where Facebook also competes with companies from which it collects data," European Commission vice-president Margrethe Vestager was quoted as saying.

The UK's CMA is also investigating Google and Apple digital companies for allegedly using antitrust practice through apps like Sandbox and AppStore, respectively. (ANI/Sputnik)

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