AG Balderas to Investigate Google Ad Practices on Behalf of New Mexican Consumers

For Immediate Release:
September 9, 2019
Contact: Matt Baca (505) 270-7148

Santa Fe, NM—AG Balderas announced today that he, along with 49 other Attorneys
General, is investigating Google’s overarching control of online advertising markets and
search traffic that may have led to anticompetitive behavior that harms consumers and
creates a barrier to access to free digital markets.
“As more and more of our lives are lived online it is absolutely critical that our regulation
of these online tech giants keep up,” Attorney Balderas said. “When the federal
government is slow to act or, in some cases, doesn’t act at all, I will continue to step in
and aggressively protect consumers, privacy and the free market.”
This is not the first time Attorney General Balderas has set his sights on the internet
giant. In the fall of 2018, Attorney General Balderas sued Google and a number of
other companies for violating children’s privacy and consumer protection laws. That
lawsuit, filed in the Federal District Court in New Mexico, alleged Google knowingly
collected data from children under the age of 13 and falsely represented that its “For
Families” section of the Google play store was a safe place for parents to find games
and apps for their children. Both this investigation and AG Balderas’s previous lawsuit
against Google involve enforcement of state and federal laws. The privacy lawsuit is
currently awaiting rulings on defendants’ motions to dismiss.
Balderas urges consumers and all users of the internet to take steps to protect
themselves: “Whenever you are online, be sure to pay attention to who is gathering
your data and what they are doing with it. When you are using a mobile device, make
sure you check your privacy settings to ensure you and your family know where your
data is going.” The Attorney General recommends reading through the privacy policies
of your favorite websites and apps. He also recommends regularly checking the privacy
settings on your phones, tablets and computers to ensure you know what information
your device is sharing.