Google responds to Missouri investigation

**This image is for use with this specific article only** Google is digging into the dark corners of the web to better secure people's accounts.

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Google is defending itself after Missouri's attorney general launched an investigation of the company for potential violations of the state's antitrust and consumer-protection laws.

Google spokesman Patrick Lenihan in a Monday statement said the company has "strong privacy protections in place" and operates in a "highly competitive" environment.

He says the company hasn't yet received an investigative subpoena issued by Hawley's office.

Hawley on Monday announced the investigation, which comes on the heels of a $2.7 billion fine issued to the company by the European Union for antitrust violations.

Federal regulators in the U.S. have also investigated Google over antitrust claims. But the Federal Trade Commission settled with Google in 2013 and said it didn't find any reasons to impose radical changes on how the company runs its Internet search engine.

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