On December 10, 2018, CfA released a new report, Quitting Google, showing it is virtually impossible to avoid Google’s omnipresent tracking despite the company’s claims that “competition is just a click away.” In conjunction with the report, CfA released a new browser extension that alerts users when Google products are tracking them online.
"As it grew, BlackRock expanded its lobbying operations, especially in Washington DC and Brussels. Its ranks have swelled with employees who have regulatory or political experience. According to the Campaign for Accountability, the firm has hired at least 84 former US government officials since 2004. Since the crisis, the company has had 400 meetings or calls with senior US officials and more than 50 with senior UK officials, including presidents and prime ministers, the campaign group claims (BlackRock declined to comment on these figures)."
"And the Google Transparency Project, run by the non-profit Campaign for Accountability, and The Wall Street Journal have publicized the extravagant number of intellectual property law academics funded by Google in Europe and the Americas. According to the Journal’s reporting, for instance, Google has provided financing for hundreds of research papers defending it from regulatory incursion or other costs."
Watchdog Again Calls on Nevada Attorney General to Investigate Vivint Solar for Preying on Consumers
On October 23, 2018, CfA renewed its request to Nevada Attorney General Adam Laxalt to investigate rooftop solar companies – specifically Vivint Solar – after a local media outlet uncovered evidence that Vivint is continuing to victimize Nevada consumers.
"The BlackRock Transparency Project, an initiative from the Campaign for Accountability, a watchdog organization focused on public corruption, seeks to demystify the firm’s “access and influence” business model. BlackRock forges close relationships with governments to outpace competitors, attracting special benefits and avoiding onerous regulatory standards. Since 2004, researchers note, BlackRock has hired at least 84 former government officials, regulators, and central bankers worldwide. This can quickly bleed into conflicts of interest and official corruption."
New Report Details How BlackRock Built its Mexican Infrastructure Business Through Cronyism, Corruption and Conflicts of Interest
On September 26, 2018, CfA released a new report, "The New Corporate Colonialism," which comprehensively documents BlackRock’s efforts to expand its infrastructure business in Mexico through aggressive courtship of Mexican political leaders and organizations mired in corruption and conflict of interest scandals.
"The Campaign for Accountability, a nonprofit watchdog organization, released a report in August explaining companies such as Facebook and Google embed employees in political campaigns to inform campaign strategy."
On September 12, 2018, CfA Executive Director Daniel Stevens discussed Google’s influence in Washington with Tucker Carlson on his Fox News show, Tucker Carlson Tonight.
"Foreign propaganda from Russia and Iran spreading on Google's platform is also a concern for lawmakers. In July, Google rolled out stricter policies for political ads. Yet watchdog group Campaign for Accountability found it could still buy ads with a Google AdWords account it set up using the name and details of a notorious Russian propaganda group -- ads it paid for with rubles."