BREAKING: Justice Department files antitrust suit against Google

The DOJ is set to file the long-awaited suit today, following a lengthy investigation.

Updated: October 20, 2020 - 12:37pm

The Justice Department on Tuesday filed an antitrust lawsuit Tuesday alleging Google has engaged in anticompetitive practices to create and maintain monopolies in search and search advertising. 

The case was filed in a Washington, D.C. federal court. It marks the government's most aggressive move to date against the tech giant that has ruled the sector for 20 years. 

The department argues that Google, owned by parent company Alphabet Inc., protects its status as the gatekeeper of the internet by maintaining a net of exclusionary business agreements that virtually shut out market competition. Justice lawyers also assert that Google pays mobile phone companies and carriers to maintain Google as their default search engine, while actively preventing competitors' search engines from being preloaded onto mobile devices.

At present, Google controls about 80% of search queries in the United States, meaning no competitor is in a position to be able to build a meaningfully competitive product. 

Google will likely address the suit head on and argue, as it has in the past, that it faces plentiful competition across its various operations and that its vast apparatus helps drive businesses both big and small, while offering its internet services to consumers at no cost.