Japan will toughen the regulation that affects large technology companies such as Google, Apple, Facebook or Amazon, after finding practices that harm sellers that operate on their platforms and consumers in the face of unfair handling of their data.
The Fair Trade Commission of Japan plans to develop a series of new regulatory guidelines for summer, in which it will make a broader interpretation of the concept of "abuse of a superior negotiating position" of the country's antitrust law to protect SMEs and consumers, according to the Nikkei newspaper Thursday.
The government would have taken the decision to revise its policy on the matter after the Japanese antitrust agency revealed in a report published on Wednesday that a high percentage of companies working with these platforms experienced changes in their contracts in Japan and abroad without negotiations. previous
According to the survey carried out between February and March, 93.2% of the suppliers of the e-commerce portal Rakuten said they experienced unilateral changes in the contracts, while the percentage was 81.4% among those working in the platform. Apple, 73.8% in Google and 72.8% in Amazon.
The Japanese antitrust commission has already inspected the headquarters of some of these platforms, including Amazon, for allegedly having committed antitrust violations, such as forcing suppliers to bear part of the costs to cover the discounts applied to the products being sold. online.
The survey also found that three-quarters of consumers surveyed were concerned about the way these platforms collect and use their personal data.
Japan currently applies the concept of "abuse of position" to the relationship between business and company, and seeks to be inspired by the antitrust law to also protect consumers who lack information or knowledge to end the unfair exchange of their private data transferred to change of free services.
The plan, which will capture what is meant by this abuse and examples, could include cases such as retailers' use of online shopping data to target certain consumer advertising, as well as intentionally long and cumbersome privacy policies to discourage to the user to read them.