Google+ To Shut Down After Privacy Bug

Google exposed personal data of almost 500,000 and didn't disclose it

Google on Monday said it has made a decision to shut down its social media network, Google+.

Google also admitted that a privacy bug back in March gave more than 400 third-party applications access to users' names, email addresses, occupations, genders and ages without authorization.

"None of these thresholds were met here", they said.

To make matters worse, Google decided not to share knowledge of the data breach when it was discovered in March.

Despite the size of the security flaw, Google executives opted not to disclose the problem at the time because they feared trouble from regulators after the intense criticism encountered by Facebook over its privacy woes, according to the Wall Street Journal. It said it had no evidence that any third-party developer was aware of the bug or had misused profile data.

"Our review showed that Google+ is better suited as an enterprise product where co-workers can engage in internal discussions on a secure corporate social network", Google said.

"Smith said that despite Google's engineering teams putting in a lot of effort, "[Google+] has not achieved broad consumer or developer adoption, and has seen limited user interaction with apps.

Google says it began reviewing developer access at the start of this year, so these new policies might have arrived even without the WSJ's reporting. However, the firm "found no evidence that any Profile data was misused".

Launched in 2011 after the fall of Google Buzz (Google's 3rd attempt to create a social network), Google+ was the company's last attempt at competing with Facebook... and obviously, it didn't work.

A bug in Google+ exposed the personal data of almost 500,000 people and Google chose not to disclose it out of fears of regulatory pressure. According to Google, 90% of Google+ user sessions were less than 5 seconds, which is strikingly low compared to other social networks.

Google will limit Android apps' ability to access SMS data, call logs, and contacts.

Google is also likely to roll out several other gadgets, including a new version of its "smart" Home speaker, a rumoured tablet with a detachable keyboard and an update to its Chromecast streaming device, based on media leaks.

Google did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Because of all of this, Google announced that it would be shutting down Google+ for consumers.

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