Google had filed for European Union permission to take over online ad tracker DoubleClick, a $3.1 billion deal that already has stirred concern about the control it will give Google over Internet advertising, an Associated Press report said.
'We asked the European Commission to look at the proposed acquisition. We believe this deal is positive for both users and advertisers and fosters competition,' Google's antitrust counsel Julia Holtz, quoted by the Associated Press report, said.
Search engine rival Yahoo immediately said the deal raised important questions about the future of advertising on the web, the report said.
Microsoft, which also had wanted to buy DoubleClick, said its views had not changed since April when it warned that the deal 'raised serious competition and privacy concerns' by giving unprecedented control over online advertising, the Associated Press report said.
Using cookies and user logs, the world's largest Internet search engine compiles data on the search terms specific users enter, as well as other potentially sensitive online information, the report said.
Google took the unusual step of asking EU regulators to start looking at 'all aspects of the transaction' two months ago, the Associated Press report said.