The European Commissioner for Competition has fined Google £1.3 billion for abusing its monopoly on online advertising over the last 10 years, acting illegally by barring its clients from displaying any advertising from rival advertisers. This, said the Commissioner, prevented Google’s rivals from growing and deprived consumers the benefits of free competition.
This is the third such censure of Google by the Commissioner, totalling fines of £7.1 billion. Last year Google were fined £3.7 billion for abusing the dominant market position of its Android operating system, and in 2017 were fined £2.1 billion for artificially boosting its own “Google shopping” price comparison service in search results.
The fines, representing 1.29% of Google’s 2018 turnover, are still a long way shy of the 10% of turnover the Commissioner could impose on Google.