Privacy & Market Concentration: Intended & Unintended Consequences of the GDPR
26 Pages Posted: 15 Nov 2019
Date Written: November 6, 2019
We show that the Europe Union's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) reduced data sharing online, but had the unintended consequence of increasing market concentration. We collect panel data on the web technology vendors selected by more than 27,000 top websites internationally. The week after the GDPR's enforcement, website use of web technology vendors falls by 15%. Websites are more likely to drop smaller vendors, which increases the relative concentration of the vendor market by 17%. Increased concentration predominantly arises from vendors that use personal data such as cookies, and from the increased relative shares of Facebook and Google-owned vendors, but not from user consent requests.
Keywords: Privacy, GDPR, Competition, Web technology
JEL Classification: D04, K21, L11, L22, L51, L86, M30, M38, O38
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation