Attorney General Jim Hood is joining 49 other attorneys general as a lead state in a multistate, bipartisan investigation of tech giant Google’s business practices in accordance with state and federal antitrust laws.
The bipartisan coalition announced plans to investigate Google’s overarching control of online advertising markets and search traffic that may involve anticompetitive behavior, harming consumers. Legal experts from each state will work in cooperation with federal authorities to assess competitive conditions for online services and ensure that Americans have access to free digital markets.
“We, attorneys general, have a duty to protect the privacy rights of consumers and to ensure a market free of anticompetitive conduct that may be harming the public,” General Hood said. “I have investigated several different concerns regarding Google in the past seven years, including litigation over unauthorized data collection. This repeated conduct must stop. A strong drive to succeed is the American way, but not when you may be harming others and refusing to play fairly.”
This investigation will initially determine whether Google, or any other business entity controlled by Google, illegally established or maintained a monopoly or restrained trade in internet advertising. The investigation will examine Google’s dominance throughout the pipeline from advertiser to publisher, including potentially stifling emerging rival ad technologies.