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Parliamentary questions
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4 September 2019
P-002634-19
Question for written answer P-002634-19
to the Commission
Rule 138
Carmen Avram (S&D)

 Subject:  Google secretly feeding personal data to advertisers — GDPR compliance and the ongoing AdSense antitrust case
 Answer in writing 

According to one of its smaller rivals, Google is secretly using hidden web pages that feed the personal data of its users to advertisers, undermining its own policies and circumventing EU privacy regulations that require consent and transparency.(1)

New evidence submitted to an investigation by the Irish data regulator, which oversees Google’s European business, accused the US tech company of ‘exploiting personal data without sufficient control or concern over data protection.’

This is of course an issue of GDPR compliance, but it also raises concerns about fair competition in the market: ‘by providing potential buyers with such a granular level of targeting, Google could gain a significant competitive advantage over other companies that run advertising auctions, according to marketing executives.’(2)

1. Is the Commission aware of this, and can it update us on where the Google AdSense antitrust case stands?

2. Can the Commission confirm that Google is not using users’ sensitive data (such as the race, health and political leanings of its users) to target ads at consumers?

3. Can the Commission provide a clear answer to the following: in order to comply with GDPR does Google need the explicit consent of its users for the utilisation of their personal data (such as the race, health and political leanings) to target its ads?

(1)ttps://www.ft.com/content/e3e1697e-ce57-11e9-99a4-b5ded7a7fe3f?emailId=5d6fa42aa4cae8000444d8d0&segmentId=ce31c7f5-c2de-09db-abdc-f2fd624da608
(2)https://www.ft.com/content/e3e1697e-ce57-11e9-99a4-b5ded7a7fe3f?emailId=5d6fa42aa4cae8000444d8d0&segmentId=ce31c7f5-c2de-09db-abdc-f2fd624da608

Last updated: 10 September 2019Legal notice