The United States Justice Department is launching a broad antitrust review into whether major technology companies are unlawfully stifling competition, reports The Wall Street Journal.
The DoJ will reportedly be examining the practices of online platforms that “dominate internet search, social media and retail services,” which will involve Facebook, Google, Amazon, and Apple.
The Justice Department will examine issues including how the most dominant tech firms have grown in size and might–and expanded their reach into additional businesses. The Justice Department also is interested in how Big Tech has leveraged the powers that come with having very large networks of users, the officials said.
The antitrust review will seek “extensive input and information” from industry participants and, eventually, the tech firms themselves.
There is no defined goal for the investigation other than to determine whether there are antitrust problems that need addressing, but DoJ officials said that a “broad range of options are on the table.” Other company practices that ultimately raise concern about compliance with laws also won’t be ignored.
This investigation is separate from a rumored Google probe that will look at whether Google has engaged in unlawful monopolization practices.
The FTC and a House antitrust subcommittee have also been investigating anticompetitive conduct among major tech companies, and last week, executives from Facebook, Google, Apple, and Amazon testified before Congress.
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