U.S. tech giants facing antitrust probes2019-06-04 17:38 by Daniela
The U.S. government plans to investigate whether tech giants such as Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google misuse their massive market power. Lawmakers in the House said on Monday that they were looking into the tech giants' possible anti-competitive behavior. That could lead to the first overhaul of antitrust rules in many decades, an effort to keep up with an industry that didn't exist when antitrust laws were written.
The Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice, which enforce antitrust laws in the United States, have divided oversight over the four companies, with Amazon and Facebook under the watch of the FTC, and Apple and Google under the Justice Department.
"The decision to investigate comes from complaints from any source - they could come from the president, they could come from consumer groups," said Herbert Hovenkamp, professor of legal studies and business ethics at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. "Once they investigate, they only bring a case if they are pretty sure they can win."
Facebook is already under investigation by the FTC over its handling of user data and has said it is expecting a fine of up to $5 billion.
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