Under the leadership of Director Rohit Chopra, the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau (CFPB) is taking meaningful steps to better understand the risks with Big Tech’s rapid expansion into financial services. In October, the CFPB issued a statement and series of orders to collect information from the tech giants on their payment system plans. This information will enable the CFPB to monitor these activities for data surveillance, access restrictions, and other risks to consumers and small businesses as payments technologies and markets evolve.
Apple, Amazon, Facebook, and Google already control critical infrastructure that other businesses depend on, including for search, digital advertising, and e-commerce.
They already exploit their gatekeeper power to entrench their dominance, harm rivals, and impose onerous terms and fees on small businesses. As these corporations move into financial services, they are positioned to gain still more structural power across the economy.
Given the growing chokehold Big Tech has over our economy, communities, and democracy, this is an issue for consumers, as well as small businesses. ILSR commends the Bureau for undertaking this inquiry. In support of the CFPB’s efforts, ILSR submitted a comment letter outlining our concerns and key questions we’d like the CFPB to investigate. You can check out our letter here.
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