Google shutting down social network Google+ after security bug disclosed

Google shutting down social network Google+ after security bug disclosed

Google shutting down social network Google+ after security bug disclosed

"Earlier this year, right at the time they discovered this, the Facebook Cambridge Analytica data breach had just happened, there's a lot of regulator scrutiny of Facebook and tech companies and how they're handling data, and internally, they were anxious about being pulled into this conversation in a bigger way".

The vice president of engineering, Ben Smith, confirmed in a 'Safety and Security' blog post that the company had detected a security bug in March that impacted the profiles of close to half a million users and their information. "None of these thresholds were met here", Google memo said. While the company issued a statement saying, the issue was not serious enough to inform the public. The compromised data were optional Google+ profile fields that included name, age, gender, occupation, and email address.

Google has even admitted that no one actually uses Google+.

That is, they decided that its product Google Plus is best suited as an internal social network.

Although Google discovered and patched the potential data leak in March 2018, the company initially opted not to publicize it. The company said that up to 438 apps may have used the API.

Google is also updating Gmail's User Data Policy for the consumer version to limit access to user data.

"Going forward, consumers will get more fine-grained control over what account data they choose to share with each app. Given these challenges and the very low usage of the consumer version of Google+, we chose to sunset the consumer version of Google+".

"The consumer version of Google+ now has low usage and engagement: 90% of Google+ user sessions are less than five seconds", blog post reads.

This shut down will come after a 10-month "wind-down" period, which ends next August.

Webroot senior threat research analyst Tyler Moffitt says, "Although it seems that Google has shut down an entire line of business due to this breach, from a GDPR perspective, the company appears to have gotten off lightly". The decision stems from Project Strobe, an internal effort started earlier this year with the goal of reviewing third-party developer access to Android and Google Account data.

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