Italy: AGCM starts investigation into Google for abuse of dominant position in display advertising market
The Italian Competition Authority ('AGCM') announced, on 28 October 2020, that it had started an investigations into Alphabet Inc., Google LLC, and Google Italy S.r.l. for an alleged violation of Article 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union. In particular, AGCM outlined that Google indiscriminately used the relevant amount of data collected through his own applications, preventing competitors from competing effectively. In addition, AGCM highlighted that the investigation relates to the availability and use of data for display advertising marketing campaigns. More specifically, AGCM noted that Google carried out an internal-external discriminatory conduct, refusing to provide Google ID decryption keys and excluding third party tracking pixels. Moreover, AGCM stated that Google used tracking elements enabling its marketing intermediation services to reach a targeting capacity that other competitors were not able to reach. Lastly, AGM recalled that the investigated conducts have a significant impact on competition within the digital advertising market, with relevant consequences for competitors and consumers.