The US Department of Justice said on Tuesday that it is opening a broad antitrust review of big tech companies based on “new Washington threats” from Facebook, Google, Amazon and Apple, according to a report from the Wall Street Journal.
The agency is to examine the practices of online platforms that dominate internet search, social media and retail services, the DOJ said in a statement Tuesday. It will also be separated from the department’s probes of Google and Apple that were reported earlier this summer and are intended to take a closer look at individual potential violations.
“Without the discipline of meaningful market-based competition, digital platforms may act in ways that are not responsive to consumer demands,” said Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim of the Antitrust Division. “The Department’s antitrust review will explore these important issues.”
The department said in a press release the review “will consider the widespread concerns that consumers, businesses, and entrepreneurs have expressed about search, social media, and some retail services online.”
Shares of Facebook, Alphabet, and Amazon all fell more than 1% immediately after the announcement, and Apple’s stock also dropped, according to CNBC.
Representatives from Facebook and Apple declined to comment on the matter. Apple CEO Tim Cook said earlier in a June interview that he believed there were no reasons to conclude that Apple is a monopoly because “we don’t have a dominant position in any market.”