Technology

France Fines Google 1.1 Million Euros for Hotel Classification

France Fines Google 1.1 Million Euros: The technology giant Google will have to face a new millionaire fine imposed by France , this time for deceptive commercial practices in relation to a classification of hotels that the company had made based on its own criteria, without taking into account the official classification made by tourist authorities.

 

The French Directorate General for Competition, Consumption and Fraud Control , which depends on the Ministry of Finance, has been in charge of stipulating this fine, estimated at 1.1 million euros , according to Reuters .

 

According to what has been learned, Google made a classification of the hotels in France giving them a star rating, similar to the one established by the State-controlled Tourism Development Agency (Ataout). However, Google, instead of being based on quality criteria, as the state agency can do, granted that classification to hotels based on its own criteria and algorithm, which could have confused customers interested in these establishments.

 

Due to this, a group of hoteliers presented a complaint that precisely criticized that this classification was misleading, which led to the opening of an investigation by the French Prosecutor’s Office in 2019.

 

The Directorate General for Competition, Consumption and the Repression of Fraud in France (DGCCRF) has confirmed that Google’s ranking was “misleading”, especially in its search engine.

 

This institution emphasizes that both Google Ireland and Google France have corrected these practices, but have reached an agreement with the Prosecutor’s Office to pay a fine of 1.1 million euros in compensation.

 

The investigation carried out by the Prosecutor’s Office has confirmed that in 30 percent of the cases, the index of the Google search engine, which could be consulted in its Maps or hotel reservations section, did not correspond to the one established by Atout.

 

Following the complaint, Google reset its server and began displaying search results according to the official ranking. Previously, the classification of the hotels that could be consulted was based on its own algorithm and also on information from third parties and available online.

France Fines Google 1.1 Million Euros France Fines Google 1.1 Million Euros

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