Google is going public with its own complaint of Microsoft’s anti-competitive actions after years of defending itself against accusations of monopolistic behavior in the U.S. and Europe. Google said that Microsoft exploits unfair licensing terms to “lock in clients” in order to control the cloud computing business, in a letter sent to the Federal Trade Commission on Wednesday.
The letter was written in response to an extensive FTC call for comments on possible anti-competitive behavior in the cloud market. The FTC spokesperson declined to make any additional comments.
Google singled out Microsoft in the complaint, contending that the corporation can make it challenging for its sizable clientele to use anything other than its Azure cloud infrastructure service because of its dominance in the Windows Server and Microsoft Offices markets. Google referred to Microsoft’s licensing requirements as a “complex web” that restricts companies from varying the vendors of their enterprise software.
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A serious risk to national security and cybersecurity, according to Google, is posed by such control. It drew attention to a series of hacks that involved Microsoft technologies, notably the SolarWinds hack. Both Microsoft and Google have active cybersecurity practises that address and investigate online threats.
Google has frequently faced antitrust issues. The US Department of Justice filed its second antitrust action against Google in a little more than two years in January, this time focusing on its advertising division.
In a previous action brought by the department in October 2020 under the Trump administration, Google was charged with abusing its dominant status to stifle competition in internet search through exclusionary contracts. Trial in that case is anticipated to begin in September. Large groups of state solicitors have also filed three other antitrust claims against Google, one of which is targeted at the company’s advertising division and is being led by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton.