Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley launches an antitrust investigation into Google (GOOGL, GOOG), accusing the company of violating the state's consumer protection laws. During a news conference today, Hawley says he wants to know if Google is breaking Missouri law by the way it's collecting, using, and releasing information about its users and their online activities.
Federal regulators in the US have also investigated Google over antitrust claims.
Hawley on Monday announced the investigation, which comes on the heels of a $2.7 billion fine issued to the company by the European Union for antitrust violations.
Hawley noted Google has access to an estimated 70 percent of all card transactions in the United States, as well as online users' location, device information, cookie data, online queries and website history.
He said, however, that Google has "strong privacy protections in place for our users" and that it continues "to operate in a highly competitive and dynamic environment".
National regulators last probed Google in 2013, when the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) reached a settlement with the internet company.
Hawley, who's running for U.S. Senate next year, is launching the investigation at a time when America's largest tech companies are facing considerable scrutiny from both parties for their position in both America's corporate and civic spheres.
He says the company hasn't yet received an investigative subpoena issued by Hawley's office.