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Tech & Science associations warn of the Fitbit takeover by Google

20:41  02 july  2020
20:41  02 july  2020 Source:   t3n.de

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Verbände warnen vor der Fitbit-Übernahme durch Google © Shutterstock associations warn of the Fitbit takeover by Google

The Fitbit takeover would give Google access to health data. International associations are calling on regulators to drop the deal.

International data and consumer protection organizations want to stop Google's acquisition of Fitbit. 20 interest groups from different countries have drawn up an joint declaration . They fear distortion of competition and insufficient data protection.

appeal to regulators

Google announced last November the takeover of the fitness tracker manufacturer Fitbit. Google wants to pay 2.1 billion dollars for it. However, the regulatory authorities still have to agree.

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The open letter calls on antitrust and data protection authorities worldwide to drop the deal. Signed by the US consumer protection organization Public Citizen, the European organization for digital rights Access Now and the global organization Privacy International.

You have "significant concerns" that the acquisition could change the digital healthcare industry worldwide. Google would thus have access to the intimate data of the users.

Highly sensitive data record

Google claims that it is not primarily interested in the data when it is transferred. "This deal is about devices, not data," a spokeswoman for told Reuters .

The authors of the open letter have doubts about this. "Regulators must assume that in practice, Google will use Fitbit's entire currently independent, unique, and highly sensitive data set in combination with its own data set," the text said.

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Influence on Competition

"We believe that the combination of Google and Fitbit's hardware efforts will increase competition in this sector," said the Google spokeswoman. Here too, consumer protection organizations fear exactly the opposite.

Using Fitbit's health and location data, Google could strengthen its dominant position in digital markets such as online advertising, the letter said.

authorities still undecided

Some regulators share concerns, Reuters reports. The Australian competition authority is still critical and will decide in August. In America there is already an antitrust lawsuit against Google. A decision on the Fitbit deal is due to be made in the EU in July.

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