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Google confirms DOJ's check and says it must submit antitrust records



Photo: David Ramos (Getty)

The Justice Department assigns Google's parent company, Alphabet, to Google has announced any information about previous antitrust investigations by the tech giant.

This is the company's first public acknowledgment that it is among the companies under review as part of a broad-based antitrust investigation launched by the Justice Department in July. According to an SEC filing made public on Friday, the company acknowledged an additional probe in its practices of "more than half" of the state's attorneys general, which is expected to be announced on Monday, as the Washington Post reported earlier this week.

"The DOJ has asked us to provide information on these past investigations and we expect attorneys general to ask such questions," Google's senior vice president Tom Kent wrote on Friday. "We have always worked constructively with regulators and will continue to do so."

It is unclear what this information includes, but it will likely include documents and findings from the 201

3 Federal Trade Commission study into Google's business practices due to concerns that it is dampening smartphone and online search markets.

Big technology companies are facing increased scrutiny this year as privacy scandals continue to make headlines. Google's discovery comes on the heels of news reports earlier today that the New York attorney general plans to launch a multi-state antitrust trial on Facebook. The social media giant also confirmed that it is being investigated by both the FTC and the DOJ for antitrust violations. The FTC recently fined Facebook a record $ 5 billion in abuses of privacy in the Cambridge Analytica scandal, a measure that many Democrats have denounced as a slap on the wrist.

In July, the Justice Department announced that it was launching a survey of "leading online marketplaces" to look at whether these companies were "reducing competition, stifling innovation, or otherwise harming consumers." The move comes months after discussions between the DOJ and the FTC, both have antitrust powers, both coordinating which companies to investigate among big names in technology such as Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google.


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