Bloomberg

The spotlight's on Facebook, but Google is also in the privacy hot seat

A reception desk at the new Google campus in Boulder, Colorado, on Feb. 21, 2018. Foto: Bloomberg photo by Daniel Brenner.

No one at Google envied Mark Zuckerberg last week as he was being grilled by Congress. But for years, they certainly coveted the personal data that made Facebook a formidable digital ad player. And the strategies they set to compete have now placed Google squarely in the cross hairs of a privacy backlash against the world's largest social-media company.

The House and Senate questioned Zuckerberg for about 10 hours after revelations that data on millions of Facebook users got into the hands of Cambridge Analytica, a consulting firm that worked on President Donald Trump's 2016 presidential campaign. The hearings centered on the digital information and machinery Facebook built up to serve targeted ads. No company has a bigger business doing that -- except Google. When the grilling ended, Democrats and some Republicans called for broad privacy regulation, putting Google on the hot seat next to Zuckerberg...

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