Italy’s anti-competitive watchdog has ordered an investigation against Google for alleged abuse of a dominant position in data portability in the country.
According to the Italian Competition Authority, Google has brought about interoperability in sharing individuals’ data with other platforms, and in particular with the direct marketing platform called Weople.
Weople has developed an innovative data investment bank.
The Italian Competition Authority on Thursday opened an investigation against Google for abuse of a dominant position in violation of Article 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.
According to the authority, “Google’s behavior could undermine the right to portability of personal data, established by Article 20 of the GDPR, and could limit the economic benefits that consumers can derive from their data. “.
“At the same time, the alleged abuse could reduce competition as it would limit the ability of alternative operators to develop innovative data-driven services,” the authority added.
The Alphabet/Google group holds a dominant position in several markets that allow it to extract large amounts of data through the services it provides (Gmail, Google Maps, Android) and, in 2021, achieved a turnover of $257.6 billion.
Data portability, insofar as it facilitates the flow of data and the mobility of users, offers alternative operators the possibility of exerting competitive pressure on companies like Google, which has established its dominance on the creation of ecosystems based on managing unlimited amounts of data, operating solely on their own business model.
“Furthermore, the right to portability, if accompanied by effective interoperability mechanisms, can offer users the opportunity to derive the maximum economic potential from the use of personal data, including by modes of operation different from those currently practiced by the dominant operator,” the authority said.
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