Google is now facing a fine from an International organization over alleged shady searches on its giant platform.
The European Union (EU) has issued a whopping $2.7 billion fine on Google for allegedly denying “consumers a genuine choice.”
Tracing the case, the charges claim that the search engine giant deliberately hid certain search results in order to funnel potential customers to Google’s own shopping platforms.
“What Google has done is illegal under EU antitrust rules,” said Margrethe Vestager, an antitrust official.
“It denied other companies the chance to compete on their merits and to innovate. And most importantly, it denied European consumers a genuine choice of services and the full benefits of innovation,” the official continued.
Google, however, unwelcome the decision, maintaining in a statement that, “We respectfully disagree with the conclusions announced today. We will review the Commission’s decision in detail as we consider an appeal, and we look forward to continuing to make our case.”
By giving links to Google’s own shopping platforms a higher/better placement on search results, competitors were reduced to areas less likely to be clicked.
Under the rules, the EU could have fined the company as much as 10% of its annual sales ($9 billion), it chose to only go after approximately 2.5%.
If the fines are successfully imposed, competing companies that saw their search results diminished by Google could receive compensation, says decision.
It can be remembered that this is not the first time the EU has targeted Google for shady practices.
Google has been accused of restricting access to one of its primary competitors in the smart phone arena—Android.
Even AdSense, which delivers advertisements across the web, has been under EU scrutiny.
Other tech giants has come under fire from the EU, too, including Intel back in 2009 for allegedly violating antitrust rules, potentially costing them $1.2 billion.