Australia to force Facebook and Google to reveal their algorithms due to new regulations

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The web giants are definitely going through a period of violent upheaval. Just a month ago, it was reported that senators U.S. had presented a bill to force companies of technology to disclose the net value of personal data to users who collect on them.

Shortly before, a judge of the Court of Chancery of Delaware ordered Mark Zuckerberg's company to disclose to shareholders information and documents on how they are processed, protect and exploit the personal data of users.

These two seemingly isolated events are in fact just links in a chain born out of the widespread loss of confidence in the ability of the web titans to protect the user data they collect.

Other event what happens to the first two in a relatively short period of time is the threat looming over big technology, especially Facebook and Google in particular in Australia.

In fact, after a survey carried out for a year and a half in the two companies, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), the Commission concluded the need for a regulator reinforced, with power to control the operation of Google and Facebook.

For the Commission believes that it should be able to "proactively monitor" whether the algorithms of the tech giants are stifling the competition. The two companies could soon be forced to reveal all the secrets of the algorithms that made their success.

Which, in itself, it could be a deeply unpleasant exercise for both Google and Facebookas both are known to keep quiet around the details of how their algorithms work. If implemented, the ACCC report's recommendations would be one of the least lenient regulations in the world.

However, the means by which Australian authorities plan to dissect Google and Facebook algorithms to assess its impact on the competition remain a mystery. On the other hand, the report recommends the creation of a new organization within the ACCC.

This would be a "Digital Platforms Branch" that would proactively monitor the behavior of digital platforms and investigate the potentially anti-competitive behavior of digital platforms.

So to allow this surveillance to go smoothly and above all to be truly efficient, the report recommends that the Australian government launch a public investigation aimed at forcing companies to disclose all the information they need to understand how they work. internally.

"ACCC is also concerned about the large amount and diversity of data collected by digital platforms such as Google and Facebook on Australian consumers, which goes beyond the data that users actively provide when using digital platforms"

The Commission also examined the fake news case for which he advocated the adoption of a new code of conduct to which all digital platforms would be subject with more than one million monthly users.

And finally the Australian regulator report is obviously back on Google's recurring trend of putting its own services as default services on millions of Android devices.

He recommended that the Silicon Valley company be required to offer Australian users the option to choose whether, for example, they want to use Google Chrome by default or not.

According to the Wall Street Journal, a Google representative said the company "would engage with the government with recommendations."

Facebook's response is still awaitedreports the newspaper. What you did not expect, are the opinions of Internet users. The trend is quite unanimous in their ranks.

For the most part, they think that this report is just another regulatory effort that will lead nowhere, as the Australian authorities have, in their view, no real way to force Google and Facebook to disclose the actual algorithms.

For them, the two companies could give Australian authorities 10 years of algorithms that they would only see shoot up.

Source: https://www.accc.gov.au


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