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The DOJ Just Slammed Google With a Landmark Antitrust Case

It's the largest legal challenge that Google has faced in its history, and is likely to result in a court fight that could last years.

This story originally appeared on Business Insider

The United States Department of Justice filed an antitrust lawsuit against Google on Tuesday morning, kicking off the largest legal challenge the tech giant has ever faced.

Justin Sullivan /Getty Images via BI
Google's CEO Sundar Pichai.

The case argues that Google uses a network of illegal, exclusionary business deals which disadvantage smaller competitors, building an unfair advantage in search and online advertising. Eleven states joined the Justice Department in its lawsuit.

Google is unlikely to back down from the legal fight, which could stretch out in court for years.

The lawsuit argues that Google unfairly pays smartphone manufacturers to place its apps front-and-center by pre-installing them on handsets. It pays for this using revenue from its advertising platform, the DOJ will argue.

The antitrust suit will be led by the appointees of whoever wins the November 3 presidential election.

The DOJ said on Twitter it will hold a virtual briefing on "an antitrust announcement" at 9:45 a.m. ET, but did not specify whether the announcement would be about Google.

The heavily anticipated lawsuit comes amid growing bipartisan scrutiny of Big Tech firms. President Donald Trump has pushed his administration to crack down on Big Tech companies, which he perceives as biased against him, while both Democratic and Republican lawmakers are calling for tech giants to be more heavily regulated.

Last month, House Democrats published a report following a year-long investigation that concluded Google, Apple, Facebook, and Amazon have monopoly power on part with "oil barons and railroad tycoons" of past centuries.

Google is also currently the subject of a probe by 50 state attorneys general, which was officially announced in September last year.

This is a developing story...