RK, the Turkish Competition Authority, which is a government agency regulating competitive market processes, fined Meta Platforms for violating the country’s competition law. The fine is 346.72 million liras, equal to 18.63 million US dollars.
According to RK, combining the data collected from Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp services caused the deterioration of competition which made it difficult for Meta’s competitors operating in online display advertising markets by creating barriers to enter the market.
The RK said that Meta breached the Turkish competition law’s article 6. However, Meta can appeal the decision at the Administrative Court of Ankara within next 60 days. A company spokesperson said that Meta has disputed the decision of Turkey’s RK.
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The spokesperson said Meta Platforms strive to protect user privacy and give people transparency and control over their personal data. They further added that the company will consider all options.
Following a new privacy agreement in 2021 that asks WhatsApp users to share data with Facebook, Turkey launched an inverstigation into WhatsApp and Facebook. Meta had to put a stop to the new privacy agreement in light of the reactions and the investigation.
Turkey also occasionally fines social media giants, including Meta platforms, for defying the regulations and laws that aim to increase government controls. Social media platforms were focused on in Turkey after the government passed a new disinformation law on October 14 that will maximize the control of Turkish government on social media platforms.