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As Microsoft president Brad Smith prepares to testify before Congress about Google's power over the news business, Google's senior vice president of global affairs Kent Walker accused Microsoft of "reverting to their familiar playbook of attacking rivals and lobbying for regulations that benefit their own interests" in a blog post.
In his testimony, Smith will throw Microsoft's weight behind new antitrust legislation that would allow news organizations to negotiate with online content distributors, including Google.
Walker claimed that Microsoft is seeking to distract from its recent involvement in the SolarWinds attack. "It's no coincidence that Microsoft's newfound interest in attacking us comes on the heels of the SolarWinds attack and at a moment when they've allowed tens of thousands of their customers — including government agencies in the U.S., NATO allies, banks, nonprofits, telecommunications providers, public utilities, police, fire and rescue units, hospitals and, presumably, news organizations — to be actively hacked via major Microsoft vulnerabilities," Walker wrote, including links to the Microsoft's various scandals.
Emily Birnbaum ( @birnbaum_e) is a tech policy reporter with Protocol. Her coverage focuses on the U.S. government's attempts to regulate one of the most powerful industries in the world, with a focus on antitrust, privacy and politics. Previously, she worked as a tech policy reporter with The Hill after spending several months as a breaking news reporter. She is a Bethesda, Maryland native and proud Kenyon College alumna.