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Photo: STR/AFP via Getty Images

Google confirmed Sunday that it removed some InterActive Corp. browser extensions from the Chrome Web Store, following a report that Google thought some of these extensions may entail deceptive marketing.

Why it matters: IAC both relies on Google and competes heavily with the search giant, which the Wall Street Journal report said is now weighing "severe penalties" against the smaller company. Plus, the dispute comes amid heightened antitrust scrutiny for Google, including a suit from the Justice Department.

Driving the news: Per the Journal report, a Google audit found IAC, which owns a large portfolio of web properties from video platform Vimeo to finance site Investopedia, advertising against Google searches for voting information and other terms.

  • If users clicked on the ads, IAC would reset their Chrome homepages its own Google-powered search engine MyWay and install a browser bar for Ask.com, a separate IAC search property.

Of note: The Journal report says that Google has yet to take stronger action in part because it worries that doing so would raise further antitrust concerns.

What they're saying: A Google spokesperson confirmed the takedowns and added in a statement, "We're reviewing [IAC’s] remaining extensions and our enforcement options, and have not made a decision regarding IAC's status on the store."

  • "Google has used their position to reduce our browser business to the last small corner of the internet, which they're now seeking to quash," IAC countered in its own statement.

Go deeper

Jan 25, 2021 - Technology

Google says it may have found a privacy-friendly substitute to cookies

Photo: STR/AFP via Getty Images

Google on Monday said new test results show promising signs that the technology it's hoping will replace cookie-based ad targeting is working.

Why it matters: Google and web browser rivals Apple and Mozilla have all introduced sweeping privacy changes recently that will collectively phase out cookies, an internet tracking tool that tracks users' web browsing history.

UNC race conscious admissions process upheld by judge

Students walk through the campus of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on Aug. 18, 2020 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Photo: Melissa Sue Gerrits/Getty Images

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill can continue its race conscious admissions process, a federal judge ruled on Monday.

Why it matters: The case could end up in the Supreme Court after the conservative nonprofit Students for Fair Admissions (SFFA) vowed to appeal the judge's ruling that UNC didn't discriminate against against white and Asian American applicants in its policy that it said was designed to increase diversity.

SEC debunks conspiracy theories about meme stock mania

Photo: Alessia Pierdomenico/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The SEC issued its long-awaited report on the meme stock mania, which downplayed the narrative that a "short squeeze" was the primary driver behind GameStop's historic stock moves — and shot down conspiracy theories about the event.

Why it matters: The postmortem was highly anticipated, largely because of what it could hint about what the regulator thinks should be done in wake of the saga. But the report stopped short of specific policy recommendations.