Although the regulator's order is not public, Microsoft has stated publicly that it anticipates a fine of hundreds of millions of dollars relating to violations of the EU privacy law by its targeted advertising practices on its LinkedIn platform. In early June, Microsoft issued public guidance about the amount and general nature of the anticipated fine. The EU has fined Google and Facebook more than $1B (and counting) for privacy issues since the start of 2022.
Why It Matters
The privacy regulators in the EU are on a mission to bring Big Tech companies to heel in matters of consumer privacy. Increasingly, this means fines and rulings that go after targeted advertising practices. Although it is unlikely that smaller businesses will face such scrutiny, the repeated efforts to clamp down on targeting and information collection practices could affect the services that Big Tech offers to its smaller US customers. Until they find a way to satisfy EU regulators about their privacy practices, Big Tech services such as targeted advertising, checkout, analytics, and more could face limitations that impair or slow the ability of US companies to market or advertise to European audiences.