Big data and competition law
Last week, lawyers from Amsterdam and beyond joined us at NEMO Science Museum for a seminar on Big Data and Competition Law. We were honoured to welcome panellists Onno Brouwer, Partner at Freshfields and Yvo de Dries, Head of Legal Compliance at Philips Lighting and as of 1st September, Partner at Allen & Overy alongside KLDiscovery Ediscovery Consultant, Jean-Marie Abel.
Moderated by Tina Shah, the seminar was centred on an in-depth discussion about the ways in which big data can impact upon anti-trust practice.
The discussion began by defining what exactly big data is and how it differs from personal data. Big data is defined as "the collection, storage and analysis of very large datasets that can reveal patterns of information that would not be visible from smaller datasets or individual data points." Personal data is defined as "any information that can identify individuals directly or indirectly.
Although this may seem like an obvious place to start, ‘Big Data’ has become something of a buzzword that has been incorrectly used as a catch-all term for anything pertaining to large data sets.
Once this was clarified, we were able to move on to the discussion which covered:
- The role of big data in merger control case, focusing on Google/DoubleClick as a real life example
- Big data, privacy and consumer choice as a consideration of competition authorities, focusing on Facebook using data collected by Whatsapp following the merger of the two companies
- How law firms and companies can use big data to their advantage in comp
Following a lively, interactive and informative discussion, our speakers and guests enjoyed drinks and canapes on NEMO’s spectacular rooftop terrace. As you can see from the pictures, this was a perfect summer’s evening and a fantastic way to round off our seminar.