Australia’s Antitrust Watchdog Considers Cases Against Big Tech Over Ads

Competition regulator Rod Sims has foreshadowed possible further legal cases against tech groups as a result of inquiries into mobile phone app stores and how ads are sold online, reported The Guardian.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, which Sims chairs, has been investigating so-called “ad tech,” where search engine Google is a major player, and the stores both Google and competitor Apple use to sell mobile phone apps, as part of its broader agenda to examine the power of tech companies.

Sims handed a report detailing the findings of his inquiry into ad tech to the treasurer, Josh Frydenberg, on December 31, and the government is expected to release it before the end of the month.

Sims was asked about the potential consequences of the two inquiries during an interview broadcast online by Reuters on Tuesday, January 12.

“There may be some competition law cases or consumer law cases that may follow our work,” he said.

“But essentially I think the real value add will be just painting a picture of how these things work and what likely harms are.”

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