UK competition watchdog to tailor rules for big tech companies

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The UK Competition and Markets Authority has announced it will tailor rules for the most powerful tech firms, such as Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) and Alphabet’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) Google.

The watchdog is looking to implement a new regime that will “proactively shape the behaviour” of these companies, to ensure consumers and businesses are treated fairly and help to level the playing field for smaller rival tech firms.

READ: Google and Facebook to face new regulatory agency in the UK from next year

The proposal revolves around three key pillars: customised rules for each company, pro-competitive interventions and enhanced merger rules to apply closer scrutiny.

Last week, the government launched the Digital Markets Unit (DMU) as part of the CMA to create and oversee the new code of practice on digital platforms.

As revealed by the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, Matt Hancock offered Facebook’s creator Mark Zuckerberg to “water down regulation” after the latter threatened to take investments out of the UK.

Hancock, who was then secretary for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, looked for “increased dialogue” with the US entrepreneur “so he can bring forward the message that he has support from Facebook at the highest level”.

The details were made public after the Information Commissioner’s Office ordered the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport to release them.

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