Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

European Union Raids Three Internet Providers

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

European Union Raids Three Internet Providers

Article excerpt

European Union officials on Thursday conducted raids on three telecommunications companies as part of ongoing anti-trust investigations.

The EU's investigative branch, the European Commission, had concerns that the companies involved - Germany's Deutsche Telekom, France's Orange SA, and Spanish firm Telefonica - might have violated EU regulations that "prohibit the abuse of a dominant market position."

Though the EC did not name the telecom companies involved in the investigation. Deutsche Telekom and Orange SA both confirmed the raid in separate statements, and Reuters reported that Telefonica was also raided, citing a source familiar with the issue.

The three Internet companies act as conduits through which smaller content providers offer their services at the retail level.

'This service is crucial for the functioning of the Internet," the EC's statement reads.

The raids were conducted in response to complaints by local regulator Cogent Communications Group Inc., a Washington-based Internet provider whose customers transfer use services of Deutsche Telekom, Orange SA, and Telefonica, according to Bloomberg. Cogent alleges that the European telecom companies don't provide enough bandwidth to meet demand. …

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