Alphabet’s Google said on Sunday it has removed a number of browser extensions of online conglomerate IAC/InterActive for “policy violations” and is reviewing “enforcement options.”
“We continue to have conversations with IACrelated to Chrome Web Store policies and we have already removed a number of their extensions for violating our policies”, a Googlespokesman said in a statement emailed to Reuters.
“We’re reviewing the remaining extensions and our enforcement options, and have not made a decision regarding IAC’s status on the store”, the statement added.
The Wall Street Journal reported earlier that Google was deciding whether to impose severe penalties on IAC over what Google concluded were “deceptive marketing practices”.
The report added that Google determined that IAC misled users about its browser extensions and that the Alphabet unit could go as far as banning those products from its Chrome browser.
Google’s investigators found that IAC’s browser extensions often promise functions they do not deliver and steer users toward extra ads, the WSJ reported, citing sources and documents.
Google so far has not acted on the internal recommendation of its Chrome trust and safety team regarding IAC in part because the two are rivals in some categories and because Google executives are concerned penalties could be viewed as anti-competitive, the newspaper reported.
The IAC spokeswoman said Google had approved its extensions in the Chrome Store for years as part of the companies’ partnership agreement.