Italian watchdog calls Google, Facebook 'near monopolies'

'Personal data requires more protection' says privacy authority

Italian watchdog calls Google, Facebook 'near monopolies'

(see related) Rome, June 11 - Italy's privacy watchdog warned parliament Tuesday that the power of Internet giants such as Google, Facebook and Amazon "can no longer be ignored" due to their "near monopolistic" qualities. "Likewise, the differing laws with respect to European content-producers and service-providers are no longer acceptable," said Antonello Soro. In an annual report to parliament, Soro blasted "Google's search engine, Facebook's social network, and Amazon's online retail for conducting business in an near monopolistic fashion" at the expense of "a multitude of individuals who daily feed the data market. "These giants of the Internet are becoming more and more exclusive intermediaries between producers and consumers. "We should (therefore) not allow personal data to become the property of someone who collects them, and for this reason we must also continue to demand procedural transparency". Those whose data is being used, Soro added, "must be able to acquire more knowledge and become active participants in the process and be able to request the protection of their data and the transparency of the process they undergo".

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