September 24, 2017

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EU Privacy Rules Could Threaten Google’s DoubleClick Acquisition

EU Privacy Rules Could Threaten Google’s DoubleClick Acquisition

Peter Scharr, the head of a European Union data privacy group, wants to protect IP addresses under existing rules guarding personal information. Scharr made his case in front of a European Parliament hearing on Internet privacy concerns. Google, of course, is not pleased by this development, which would limit the search giant’s ability to store user data. The company argues that IP addresses do not directly identify individuals and should not be considered “personal.” Google also [takes issue](http://www.reuters.com/article/ousiv/idUSL215785220080122) with the fact that this debate is being linked to its DoubleClick acquisition, saying that regulators are “trying to take a privacy case and shoehorn it into a competition law review.”
If Google loses this battle it may have to dramatically restructure the process it uses to determine advertising rates in Europe. The current methodology relies on IP addresses as a way to circumvent click fraud. And, as a few technology experts note, a ruling against Google on this issue could put the DoubleClick acquisition in jeopardy.

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