State attorneys general will announce on Monday they are formally launching separate antitrust probes into both Facebook's (FB) - Get Report and Google's business practices, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday, placing additional pressure on the tech giants who are already facing intense federal scrutiny.
The probe of Google, a unit of Alphabet (GOOGL) - Get Report , is expected to be announced at a news conference outside the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday, the Journal said, citing people familiar with the matter. A bipartisan group of some three dozen state attorneys general will also be joining the effort, the Journal said.
The investigation will be led by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, a Republican, the people said. The attorneys general will examine the impact of Google on digital advertising markets, specifically whether its practice of targeting ads to users based on information it culls is harmful to consumers - particularly since it dominates the online advertising world.
Separately, an overlapping bipartisan group of attorneys general led by New York Attorney General Letitia James, a Democrat, is organizing a probe into social media company Facebook, the Journal said, citing the same sources.
"We continue to engage in bipartisan conversations about the unchecked power of large tech companies," James said in a statement to the Journal. "The attorneys general involved have concerns over the control of personal data by large tech companies and will hold them accountable for anticompetitive practices that endanger privacy and consumer data."
Google earlier this week agreed to pay a record $170 million fine and to make changes to protect children's privacy on its YouTube video site to settle charges with regulators that the company had illegally collected personal data from children and used it to target them with advertising.
Facebook, meantime, has been under scrutiny by regulators over its acquisitions of smaller market players with the intent of snuffing out its competition.
Shares of Facebook were down 1.15% at $188.70 in early trading on Friday. Shares of Alphabet were down 0.45% at $1,206.70.