The European Union (EU) on Tuesday fined Google a record 2.42 billion Euros ($2.72 billion) for using its power over online searches to promote its own products.
European regulators said a years-long analysis of Google’s online search results found that the tech giant lists links to its own online shopping services before those of its competitors.
“What Google has done is illegal under EU antitrust rules,” EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager told reporters Tuesday, according to ABC News.
“It denied other companies the chance to compete on merits and to innovate,” she added.
“And most importantly, it denied European consumers a genuine choice of services and the full benefits of innovation.”
Some Twitter users on Tuesday suggested that the EU’s large penalty against Google illustrates the union’s problems.
are the folks living under the european union too dumb to navigate their way around google's terrible shopping product? sad!— Greg Jarvis (@GoodBoyGreg) June 27, 2017
Other people on the social media platform voiced surprise over the EU’s fine, which is the result of a seven-year legal battle.
Google reportedly lists search results for its biggest rivals on page 4, and smaller rivals ever lower.
ABC News reported that strategy is a major advantage for Google as 90 percent of its use-clicks are on page one.
Google reportedly has 90 days to stop skewing search results to its links or it will face more fines of up to 5 percent of the average daily revenue of Alphabet, its parent company.
Google on Tuesday said that it is mulling an appeal of the EU’s decision, adding that it delivers search results aimed at helping users more quickly discover what they are hunting for.
“We will review the Commission’s decision in detail as we consider an appeal, and we look forward to continuing to make our case,” said Kent Walker, senior vice president at Google, in a statement.