EU lawmakers pass Digital Markets Act, but enforcement on ‘Big Tech’ may be problematic

EU lawmakers have passed the Digital Markets Act, a collection of new rules for tech giants such as Apple, Alphabet subsidiary Google, Amazon, Facebook, and Microsoft, but enforcing them could be problematic due to regulators’ limited resources.

EU lawmakers pass Digital Markets Act, but enforcement on 'Big Tech' may be problematic. Image: Margrethe Vestager, European Commissioner for Competition
Margrethe Vestager, European Commissioner for Competition


In addition to the rules known as the Digital Markets Act (DMA), lawmakers also approved the Digital Services Act (DSA), which requires online platforms to do more to police the internet for illegal content.

Companies face fines of up to 10% of annual global turnover for DMA violations and 6% for DSA breaches.

The two rule books for Big Tech built on EU antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager’s experiences with investigations into the companies. She has set up an DMA taskforce, with about 80 officials expected to join up, which critics say is inadequate.

“We raised the alarm last week with other civil society groups that if the Commission does not hire the experts it needs to monitor Big Tech’s practices in the market, the legislation could be hamstrung by ineffective enforcement,” European Consumer Organisation (BEUC) Deputy Director General Ursula Pachl said in a statement.

The DMA is set to force changes in companies’ businesses, requiring them to make their messaging services interoperable and provide business users access to their data. Companies will not be allow to favour their own services over rivals’ or prevent users from removing pre-installed software or apps.

MacDailyNews Take: More red tape from the EU red tape generator.

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