Brussels — Alphabet’s Google has been fined €1.49bn by the EU for thwarting advertising rivals, a penalty that may be EU antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager’s third and final attack on the US tech giant. It brings the total Google has been ordered to pay to €8.2bn in EU antitrust probes that have run for nearly a decade and taken aim at the company’s popular software for Android phones and searches related to shopping. Wednesday’s case focuses on Google’s role as an ad broker for websites, targeting exclusivity agreements for online ads with its AdSense for Search product. The service places text advertising on websites. The problematic contracts were all dropped by 2016, when the EU escalated the investigation. Google is, by far, the biggest internet advertising broker, setting up searches on customers’ websites, Vestager said, which allows it to control how most consumers start shopping. “It’s an entry point,” Vestager said at a press conference. “By gaining a foothold in advertisi...

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