Antitrust and Restrictions on Privacy in the Digital Economy

By Nicholas Economides and Ioannis Lianos (CyberBRICS Associated Scholar)

Abstract

We present a model of a market failure based on a requirement provision by digital platforms in the acquisition of personal information from users of other products/services. We establish the economic harm from the market failure and the requirement using traditional antitrust methodology. Eliminating the requirement and the market failure by creating a functioning market for the sale of personal information would create a functioning market for personal information that would benefit users. Even though market harm is established under the assumption that consumers are perfectly informed about the value of their privacy, we show that when users are not well informed, there can be additional harms to this market failure.

Originally published by IDEAS/RePEc, January 2020

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