Apple is yet again faced with another investigation by United States law regulators, however, this time around the company is not the only one facing this investigation from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) as well as several other giant tech companies such as the likes of Google, Facebook, Amazon and Square are also charged with this investigation.
The United States CFPB which is investigating the business practices of giant companies carrying out payment services, today instigates Apple, Google, Facebook, Amazon, PayPal, and Square to provide details on their consumer data practices. This is in lights note as the U.S CFPB is no less looking out for info that would help it better acknowledge how various tech companies “use and manage personal payments data access of users” in order to ensure consumers are protection.
The director U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Rohit Chopra said in a statement: “Big Tech companies are eagerly expanding their empires to gain greater control and insight into our spending habits,”.
“We have ordered them to produce information about their business plans and practices.” – he added
The U.S CFPB, mentioned that tech companies have evolved “new products and business models” in recent times during the ongoing world health pandemic, which “present new risks to users and to a fair, transparent, and competitive marketplace.”
Citing out an example, the U.S Consumer Financial Protection Bureau added saying “Apple and Google have sought to integrate payments services into their operating systems,” but there haven’t been any changes on that front to iOS and the iOS App Store during the pandemic.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is specifically concerned with data harvesting and monetization as well as “access restrictions and user choice,” which seems to be pointed at tech giants Apple and Google.
Going forward, the CFPB added saying “When payment systems gain scale and network effects, merchants and different partners feel obligated to participate, and the hazard increases that payment service operators will restrict client choice and sweltering upheaval by way of anticompetitively excluding certain enterprises. The orders seek to understand any of such restrictive access policies and how they affect the choices available to households and organizations”.
Meanwhile, in line with a sample letter [PDF], Apple is expected to offer up quite a bit of information, not excluding details on all products its products and product features, all product operating manuals, fees to use products, discounts as well as promotions for each product, and more.
Responses to the CFPB’s request must be submitted on or before due date December 15, 2021, so Apple and other tech giants will have to provide the relevant data by then.