Turkey Halts Meta’s Data Sharing Amid Antitrust Probe

18 March 2024

    Turkey’s Competition Authority Takes Action Against Meta

    In a significant move to protect competition, Turkey’s competition authority has taken decisive action against Meta Platforms Inc., the parent company of Facebook, by imposing an interim measure that restricts data sharing between its popular social media platforms Instagram and Threads. This measure comes amid an ongoing investigation into whether Meta has abused its dominant position in the market.

    The authority’s concerns revolve around the potential for competition law violations due to the merging and sharing of user data between Instagram and Threads. They believe such actions could cause “irreparable damage” to the market landscape. To prevent any further issues, the interim measure will stay in effect until a conclusive decision is reached in the investigation, which began in December.

    Adding to Meta’s challenges in Turkey, the company has also been hit with a substantial daily fine of 4.8 million lira (approximately $148,000). This separate penalty is linked to a different investigation concerning a notification message that Meta sends to its users about data sharing practices. According to the Turkish authority, the notification, which pertains to data sharing across Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, fails to provide adequate information and lacks transparency. Furthermore, it is designed to nudge users into consenting to data sharing, a tactic that has not allayed anti-competition concerns.

    As of now, a spokesperson for Meta has not provided any comments regarding these decisions. The tech giant, which has faced scrutiny from regulators worldwide over its data practices and market influence, will have to navigate through this latest regulatory challenge as it continues to operate in Turkey’s vibrant digital economy.

    The actions of Turkey’s competition authority underscore the increasing global focus on the power of major tech companies and the importance of safeguarding competitive markets for the benefit of consumers and businesses alike.

    Turkey's competition authority imposed an interim measure on Meta Platforms Inc to prevent data sharing between Instagram and Threads during an investigation into potential abuse of market dominance

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