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Google CEO Sundar Pichai Addresses Search Bias, Data Security In Capitol Hill Testimony

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Google CEO Sundar Pichai Addresses Search Bias, Data Security In Capitol Hill Testimony

Sundar Pichai, the CEO of Alphabet, Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOG) (NASDAQ: GOOGL) subsidiary Google, is the latest U.S. big tech CEO to take the hot seat in front of Congress. Pichai faced accusations from lawmakers that Google’s search algorithms have anti-conservative political biases — allegations that Pichai denied.

Pichai was adamant in his Tuesday testimony that Google’s algorithms return an accurate representation of what’s being said about a topic online without any ideological political filters.

“I lead this company without political bias and work to ensure that our products continue to operate that way. To do otherwise would go against our core principles and our business interests,” Pichai told lawmakers.

Pichai also faced tough questions related to data security after Google announced Monday it will be shutting down its Google Plus social media platform sooner than expected after a second major security vulnerability in recent months exposed the private data of more than 52 million users.

Data Security

Pichai said Google takes security extremely seriously.

“Protecting the privacy and security of our users has long been an essential part of our mission. We have invested an enormous amount of work over the years to bring choice, transparency, and control to our users,” Pichai said.

Alphabet investors have a wide range of concerns on the regulation front, including potential additional costly data protection requirements or even antitrust actions relating to Google’s search business.

Trump Lashes Out

Earlier this year, President Donald Trump blasted Google, Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) and Facebook, Inc. (NASDAQ: FB), saying the three are “treading on very, very troubled territory.”

“As you know, many people think it is a very antitrust situation, the three of them,” Trump said in August.

Trump also accused Google of “suppressing voices of conservatives and hiding information and news,” adding that the situation “will be addressed.”

So far this year, Alphabet shares have mostly tread water while investors wait to see if the company faces regulatory hurdles ahead. Alphabet stock is up just 0.5 percent year-to-date.

Related Links:

Antitrust Investigation Of Big Tech Ordered By Trump Would 'Act As A Cover' For Election Loss, Says Height Capital Markets

GDPR: The New European Data Rules And Why They Matter For Ad, E-Commerce Players

Posted-In: Sundar PichaiGovernment News Regulations Politics Management General Best of Benzinga

 

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