Australia to conduct inquiry into big tech companies; report expected in Feb next year

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Wednesday that Australia will conduct a parliamentary inquiry to check the working behaviour of the world’s largest technology companies. The country feels that there should be new legislations to protect privacy of its residents and to run content of the sites.

Morrison said that there will be possibility of considering new legislations as the new inquiry will have much wider scope. The inquiry committee’s lawmakers will investigate the algorithms being used by social media platforms, including Facebook, and will also check how the companies verify the identification and age of its users.

He added that the inquiry committee will also check that what restrictions are being set and implemented by these social media companies.

While talking to media, Morrison said that the big technology companies have big questions to answer. Since the big tech has created these social media platforms, they must ensure that the platform the platforms are safe for its users and for countries.

The inquiry committee is expected to report its findings by February 15, 2022.

However, the announcement made by the Australian government may huddle up new tensions with big companies like Facebook and Google.

Earlier in 2021, the country had implemented strict regulations due to which the technology companies had to pay for content.

After the country made the new legislations that forced social media companies to pay local media for news content, Google had threatened to shut down its Australian search engine.

Not only this, Facebook had also protested the new legislations by cutting all third-party content from the accounts of Australian people for more than a week.

 

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