Google+ Is Finally Shutting Down, And It’s About Time

Nichole VegaOct 09, 2018

But as the Wall Street Journal reports, the move comes after Google discovered a bug that left private user information open to developers in March, but declined to alert users for fear of regulatory scrutiny.

It was explained that the consumer version of Google+ has low usage and engagement with 90 per cent of user sessions lasting less than five seconds.

"Our review showed that our Google+ APIs, and the associated controls for consumers, are challenging to develop and maintain".

Google said it was unable to confirm which accounts were affected by the bug, but an analysis indicated it could have been as many as 500 000 Google+ accounts.

As a bit of a bright side, however, there was no evidence that any developer was even aware this bug existed, despite 438 applications using the API. The breach happened after a software glitch in the site gave outside developers potential access to private profile data including names, email addresses, birth dates, genders, occupations and more. Google claims that they didn't tell its users because they believed that without sufficient information on who was hacked, they found it wouldn't be useful to identify the public on the matter.

Facebook has received months of harsh criticism for allowing a developer to spirit away user information and pass it to a political firm that worked in 2016 for Donald Trump's election campaign.

Some infosec bods have taken Google's side, arguing disclosure is only needed if there's evidence of a security breach.

Under the European Union's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), if personal data is breached, a company needs to inform a supervisory authority within 72 hours, unless the breach is unlikely to result in a risk to the rights and freedom of users.

Google will wind down Google+ during the coming 10 months to allow people time to download pictures, videos or other data they want from their accounts. Google is finally killing its awful social network Google+.

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

How the Google Account permissions dialog box looks now, as opposed to the new version in header.

Google's new policy and Gmail API access rules won't safeguard Gmail users from having their inboxes pilfered for data, but it will make it harder for an app to gain access to such data in the first place.

Several policies Google introduced on Monday are created to curb the data accessible to developers offering mobile apps on the Google Play store or add-on apps for sending and organizing Gmail messages.

Unfortunately, whether you've forgotten about it or not, if you have a Google+ account, your data may have been put at risk.

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