Authorities in France on Tuesday fined tech giant Google two million euros ($2.2 million) for not showing full results in its search engine and app store, violating the rights of French users.
The Office for Competition, Consumer and Anti-Fraud (DGCCRF) said that Google’s search engine lacked information about the ranking criteria for results, and tourism searches lacked an explanation of prices.
On the other hand, the Google Play Store lacked information on ranking criteria, payment information, and dispute resolution procedures for results. Customer reviews on its apps in the store also failed to get published.
The DGCCRF launched an investigation into Google in 2016, following complaints from French start-ups that Google was abusing its market dominance.
The DGCCRF said that Google’s practices were “particularly egregious” and that the company had abused its dominant position in the market to impose its services on users.
The DGCCRF also stated that Google had not provided users with sufficient information on how to rank search results and that Google had not complied with French consumer law.
Google has fixed some of the acknowledged deficiencies, but the DGCCRF still imposed the fine.
A Google spokesperson said the company was sorry the agency had not noticed the changes.
The spokesperson added that Google has always been transparent with its users about how its products work and is open to working constructively with French and European regulators.
The fine is the latest in a series of legal battles between Google and European regulators. In 2017, the European Union fined Google €2.4bn ($2.7bn) for antitrust violations. In 2018, the European Union fined Google €4.3bn ($5bn) for abusing market dominance with its Android operating system.