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Digital Markets Regulation

Digital markets face new regulation to deliver greater competition and innovation for the use of data, while protecting consumers’ rights. Social networks, search engines and e-commerce sites are just some of the digital platforms that will likely be most affected by these new regulations. However, other technology companies that act as digital markets “gatekeepers” may also be impacted.

These new regulations will complement existing antitrust, data protection and electronic communications laws to further protect consumers, and ultimately ensure digital markets players act responsibly and are accountable.

Key issues that regulators around the globe are looking to address with new ex ante regulations include:

  • Economic dependency on a few companies who play a “gatekeeper” role in the market, through exclusive use of valuable data
  • Interoperability of data systems
  • Data mobility and portability
  • Transparency and fairness in customer contracts
  • Content moderation and protection of consumers

We are trailblazers when it comes to serving the evolving needs of players in digital markets, working at the forefront of legal and regulatory developments that are transforming this more-than-ever developing industry.

Leveraging our global network of lawyers and public policy advisors, spanning major capitals in four continents, we offer our clients unique solutions and unrivalled expertise:

  • Offering a seamless and coordinated approach through our unrivalled global platform
  • Advocacy through our top-tier public policy experience
  • Assessing risks and opportunities, as well as devising strategies to mitigate risks and maximize opportunities
  • Compliance counselling
  • Defending or bringing actions before regulatory agencies and courts

We advise clients on the potential implications for their businesses of proposals, regulations and policy papers aimed at regulating digital markets and providing legal support with their advocacy and compliance efforts.

Common themes include:

  • An increased focus on digital platforms and the collation of, and access to, data.
  • Some jurisdictions have changed, or considered changing, their merger control regimes to account for the impact of the digital era and to capture future key digital mergers that might otherwise fall outside current filing requirements.
  • Many jurisdictions have launched detailed market studies, or commissioned expert reports, relating to the digitisation of certain sectors and, more generally, the extent to which current competition laws and policies remain appropriate – in general, many authorities consider that the existing framework of competition law continues to provide a sound and sufficiently flexible basis for protecting competition in the digital era. However, some also consider that a “rethinking” of the traditional tools of analysis and enforcement is required to adapt to the challenges posed by the digital economy.

Our platform covers the main proposals, regulations and policy papers aimed at regulating digital markets in certain jurisdictions.

View a copy of our statement of capabilities.


  • ACCC’s Digital Platform Services Inquiry on data brokers – issues paper
  • Communications Legislation Amendment (Combatting Misinformation and Disinformation) Bill 2023
  • ACCC’s report on the expanding ecosystems of digital platform service providers – issues paper
  • Treasury Laws Amendment (News Media and Digital Platforms Mandatory Bargaining Code) Act 2021
  • ACCC’s Digital Platforms Inquiry – final report
  • ACCC’s Digital Advertising Services Inquiry – final report
  • ACMA’s Report on Adequacy of Digital Platforms Disinformation and News Quality Measures – final
  • Australian government, the Treasury’s Regulating Digital Asset Platforms – proposal paper
  • ACCC’s Digital Platform Services Inquiry 2020-25 – revisiting general internet search services – September 2024 – issues paper


  • EU-US Data Privacy Framework Adequacy Decision
  • Proposal for a regulation laying down additional procedural rules relating to the enforcement of GDPR
  • Digital Services Act Regulation
  • Digital Markets Act Regulation
  • Platform Regulation
  • Geo-blocking Regulation
  • IoT Sector Inquiry – final report
  • E-commerce Sector Inquiry – report
  • Competition Policy for the Digital Era – report
  • Data Act
  • Data Governance Act
  • Artificial Intelligence Act – final draft
  • European Data Spaces Proposal
  • Standards Initiative Proposal
  • Electronic Communications Code
  • Merger Control Regulation Article 22 Guidance
  • Database Directive
  • GDPR
  • Free Flow of Non-Personal Data Regulation
  • Platform to Business Regulation
  • Open Data Directive


  • Competition Law and Data joint paper by the German Federal Cartel Office and the French Competition Authority
  • Contribution to the Debate on Competition and Digital Challenges policy paper by the French Competition Authority
  • Algorithms and Competition Working Paper by the German Federal Cartel Office and French Competition Authorities
  • Law to secure and regulate the digital space (Loi SREN)


  • GWB Digitalisation Act
  • Competition Law and Data joint paper by the German Federal Cartel Office and the French Competition Authority
  • Green Paper – Digital Platforms by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy
  • German Federal Cartel Office Working Papers on:
    • Market Power of Platforms and Networks
    • Competition and Consumer Protection in the Digital Economy
    • Big Data and Competition
    • Innovations – Challenges for Competition Law Practice
    • Online Advertising
    • Competition Restraints in Online Sales After Coty And Asics – What’s Next?
    • Consumer Rights And Comparison Websites: Need For Action
  • Transaction Value Thresholds for Mandatory Pre-merger Notification, guidance published by the German Federal Cartel Office and the Austrian Competition Authority
  • Algorithms and Competition Working Paper by the German Federal Cartel Office and French Competition Authorities


  • New Italian Annual Market and Competition Law
  • Big Data report of the Joint Inquiry being undertaken by the Italian Competition Authority, Data Privacy Authority and Communications Authority


  • New Spanish Competition Act


  • Open Communications: a Smart Data scheme for the UK telecoms market – Department for Science, Innovation and Technology
  • Online Safety Act 2023 c.50UK-US data bridge: Data Privacy Framework Principles and List – Department for Science, Innovation and Technology
  • The Data Protection (Adequacy) (United States of America) Regulations 2023. SI 2023 No. 1028
  • Transparency in the procurement of algorithmic systems – Digital Regulation Cooperation Forum
  • Digital Regulation: Driving growth and unlocking innovation - policy paper
  • The Digital Markets, Competition and Consumers (DMCC) Act
  • Unlocking Digital Competition report (“Furman Report”)
  • Digital Markets Unit (DMU)
  • Digital Markets Taskforce
  • Digital Regulation Cooperation Forum
  • Regulating in a Digital World report by the House of Lords Select Committee
  • Cloud services market investigation – Competition and Markets Authority (CMA)
  • Reporting rules for digital platforms – policy paper
  • Online Safety Act
  • AI Foundation Models paper – CMA
  • LEAR Report on ex-post assessment of merger control in digital markets, commissioned by the CMA
  • Digital Markets Strategy policy paper by the CMA
  • Pricing Algorithms and Consumer Harms – policy paper
  • Online Platforms and Digital Advertising – market study
  • Online Harms White Paper and related Ofcom guidance
  • Ofcom/CMA Joint Statement on Online Safety and Competition


  • Fundamental Principles for Improvement of Rules Corresponding to the Rise of Digital Platform Businesses joint policy paper by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, the Japan Fair Trade Commission (JFTC), and the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications
  • Medium-Term Vision on Competition in the Digital Market – Summary Report and Evaluation of Competition in the Digital Advertising Market – Final Report
  • JFTC guidelines concerning abuse of superior bargaining position in transactions between digital platform operators and consumers
  • JFTC amended merger guidelines focusing on business combinations in the digital market
  • Improvement of Transparency and Fairness in Trading on Specified Digital Platforms Act, 2020
  • JFTC final report regarding digital advertising
  • Report on Algorithms/AI and Competition Policy by the JFTC study group
  • Act on Improving Transparency and Fairness of Digital Platforms


  • Preventing Algorithmic Collusion Act of 2024 – Senate Bill S.3686
  • Preventing the Algorithmic Facilitation of Rental Housing Cartels Act of 2024 – Senate Bill S.3692
  • Enhancing Safeguards for United States Signals Intelligence Activities
  • Data Protection Review Court established – US Department of Justice
  • Data Privacy Framework Program website launched – US Department of Commerce
  • Investigation of Competition in Digital Markets: Majority Staff Report and Recommendations Subcommittee on Antitrust, Commercial and Administrative Law of the Committee on the Judiciary
  • House legislative package consisting of six antitrust bills aimed at big tech firms


  • Antitrust Guidelines for Platform Economy, published by China’s State Administration for Market Regulation, February 2021

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