Weekly Antitrust and Data Privacy Updates

This week’s Antitrust and Data Privacy Updates are as below –

Google Appeals to NCLAT Over CCI Fines

Google, being fined Rs. 1337.76 Crore by CCI for its unfair trade practices, in an order in October, has filed an appeal to NCLAT. In October, CCI found Google guilty of abusing its dominant position in multiple markets in relation to android mobile devices. A Google spokesperson said that the decision to appeal is in line with Google’s understanding that the penalty by CCI presents a major setback for its users and businesses, “potentially raising the cost of mobile devices”. Google, contending that CCI has failed to take into account the majority of evidence by OEMs, developers, and users supporting the competition in favor of all, is prepared to present its case to the NCLAT.

Meta Defends Itself Against Alleged Dominance in Virtual Reality Market

Meta Inc. CEO, Mark Zuckerberg has defended the company’s acquisition of the virtual reality fitness application, by presenting his arguments before an antitrust judge. Mark argued that their actions intend to help progress the virtual reality market, and not to dominate it. Mark further argued that their acquisition of the ‘Within Unlimited’, was not really central to the company’s strategy. His clarifications included that the company’s primary intention was to build a communications tool, as well as a platform for hosting applications from other developers. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), who initiated this trial against Meta, have argued that Meta’s initiative to dominate the virtual reality market started materializing in 2014 with their acquisition of Oculus. This hearing took place alongside a series of other antitrust hearings that Meta as a company has been facing, where the EU Commission has also warned the company of potential antitrust breach in light of the operation of their Facebook Marketplace.

400 Million Users’ Data Leaked While Twitter under Investigation

Twitter faced investigations for a potential data breach where data of potentially 5.4 Million users may have been exposed, before the Data Protection Commission for Ireland. However, the company is now rocked with the news that data of more than 400 Million users was put up for sale on the internet. The person claiming to be behind the act has posted the sample data belonging to several persons who had high profile user accounts on the social media platform, such as Donald Trump Jr., Doja Cat, Charlie Puth, etc. The platform is already facing investigations before the Data Protection Commission for breach of one or more provisions fo the EU General Data Protection Regulations, which may cause the platform to incur fines for such violations. A similar breach by Meta Inc. incurred a penalty of $275,000,000 in 2021. Twitter could face similar fines while the DPC continues their investigations into the matter.

Authored by Tanmaya Purohit (Associate, BananaIP Counsels).

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