Google will pay France €1 billion to end years-long tax probe

Google will pay nearly €1 billion to French authorities to settle an ongoing investigation into its tax practices, according to The Verge. The payment includes a €500 million fine and tax payments of €465 million, still totaling less than the €1.6 billion Google was accused of failing to pay.  Since 2016, authorities had been investigating whether […]

US lawmakers step up antitrust inquiry, demanding documents from tech giants

US lawmakers step up antitrust inquiry, demanding documents from tech giants

The House Judiciary Committee of the US Congress has called on tech companies to release a wide array of documents and emails relating to possible anticompetitive practices, escalating the federal government’s ongoing antitrust investigation into companies like Facebook, Google, and Amazon.  The requests were sent directly to executives like Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, Apple’s Tim Cook, […]

France says it will block Facebook’s Libra cryptocurrency in the EU

France says it will block Facebook’s Libra cryptocurrency in the EU

Facebook’s “Libra” cryptocurrency project faced another policy setback on Thursday, with France saying that it would block its implementation in the Europe, according to BBC News. The nation’s finance minister, Bruno Le Maire, voiced concerns over how the currency could allow Facebook to abuse its dominant position in the market, would threaten the monetary sovereignty of […]

EU competition chief Margrethe Vestager will serve another term, with expanded powers to regulate tech companies

European competition chief Margrethe Vestager, who had been facing the end of her term, will instead return for a another five years, with an expanded role on the new team of commissioners, according to Reuters.  Vestager has been behind much of the European Commission’s scrutiny of tech giants, and will now serve as an Executive Vice […]

Despite billions in sales, Amazon Europe received €241m in tax credits last year

Amazon Europe was granted €241m in tax credits last year, despite reporting nearly €30bn in sales, and even as authorities move to collect more taxes from tech giants. The credits could be deducted from taxes owed on future earnings, according to The Guardian. In recent years, tech companies in Europe, many of which are based in the […]

US states launch antitrust probes targeting Facebook and Google

US states attorney generals announced two new antitrust probes on Friday, aimed at large tech companies such as Facebook and Google, according to Reuters.  One probe, investigating Facebook, will be led by New York and includes seven other states as well as the District of Columbia. A second probe is expected to be aimed at Google, […]

Europe’s mental health websites are selling sensitive​ user data to advertisers

A new study has revealed that mental health websites in Europe are selling information collected from users, including psychological health data such as answers from quizzes, according to BBC News.  The study, by Privacy International (PI), found that the way this information was collected is “neither transparent nor fair” and that many websites are “failing to meet […]

King’s Cross developers halt use of facial recognition technology

The developers behind London’s King’s Cross Central project have halted controversial plans to reimplement facial recognition technology at the site, they said in a statement on Monday. Last month, the developer revealed that its cameras “use a number of detection and tracking methods, including facial recognition.” It was among the first property-owners to admit using the […]

Sweden issues first GDPR fine, against a high school that used facial recognition to check attendance

A Swedish municipality has been fined for trialing facial recognition in a high school to track student attendance, in Sweden’s first fine under the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) data privacy rules, according to BBC News. The Skelleftea municipality in northern Sweden was fined 200,000 Swedish Krona, or about £16,800, for violating privacy laws.  The […]

Facebook has won an appeal against a German agency’s restrictions on data collection

A regional court in Germany has ruled in favor of Facebook’s appeal against a February order by the nation’s antitrust watchdog, preventing the social media giant from combining user data collected from its various platforms, which include Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp.  An order from the Federal Cartel Office (FCO) in February had accused Facebook of abusing […]