According to a report from The Hill, Rohit Chopra, a Democrat commissioner at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), testified before a House panel that he is concerned the US government is “too often captured” by the country’s largest tech companies.
During a hearing on Friday, October 18, Chopra made the comments about data privacy before the House Judiciary Committee’s antitrust subcommittee, which has been investigating whether the top technology firms wield their power in the marketplace.
“All too often, the government is too captured by those incumbents that use their power to dictate their preferred policies,” Chopra said, discussing his concerns around the unprecedented power and strength of Big Tech. He did not name any specific agency or company.
Chopra, a Democratic official who formerly helped Sen. Elizabeth Warren (Democrat – Massachusetts) establish the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, in recent months has aggressively dissented to the FTC’s record-breaking settlements with large tech companies including Facebook and Google’s YouTube, claiming the agency is not using the full breadth of its authority to take on Big Tech.
The House Judiciary Committee’s antitrust panel is currently probing competition issues around Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google. As part of that investigation, they are looking into whether Congress needs to modernize antitrust laws to better take on the digital marketplace, and if the regulatory agencies—which include the FTC and Department of Justice—are properly enforcing the laws on the books.
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