wordpress blog stats
Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

Google to shut Google Plus after failing to disclose user data breach

Google is shutting down its social network Google Plus after it emerged that the company had failed to reveal a breach affecting almost 500,000 users. A bug allowed third-party users and developers to access Google+ user profile data since 2015. Google discovered the vulnerability and patched the bug in March, but did not disclose anything to the public or to affected users.

The bug also allowed developers to access users’ and users’ friends’ “private only” data. This data is limited to optional Google+ Profile fields including name, email address, occupation, gender and age.

Key takeaways

  • Google does not know which users and accounts were impacted by the bug, but upto 500,000 Google+ accounts were potentially affected. 438 third-party applications potentially used the API.
  • Google did not find that developers knew of the bug, or evidence of user data being misused.
  • The company is shutting down the consumer side of Google+. Note that 90 percent of sessions lasted less than five seconds. “Given these challenges and the very low usage of the consumer version of Google+, we decided to sunset the consumer version of Google+.”
  • Because Google could not find any evidence pertaining to developer access and misuse, it did not make any disclosure to the public.
  • An internal memo from Google says the company did not disclose the breach to the public because it would lead to “us coming into the spotlight alongside or even instead of Facebook despite having stayed under the radar throughout the Cambridge Analytica scandal,” reports Wall Street Journal. The memo further says that the disclosure would also invite “immediate regulatory interest.”
  • Google+ will be wound down over the next 10 months.
  • Google will now ask for granular permissions and limit what use apps can access data for; “only apps directly enhancing email functionality—such as email clients, email backup services and productivity services will be authorized to access this [Gmail] data,” says Google’s blog post. Additionally, only apps which users have selected as the default app for making calls or sending text messages will be able request for access to user call logs and SMS data.

You May Also Like

News

Google has signed a deal with news publishers in France to pay them for content appearing as preview snippets in search results, the company...

News

Hyperlocal e-commerce company Dunzo has raised $40 million from new and existing investors including Google, Lightbox, Evolvence, Hana Financial Investment, LGT Lightstone Aspada, and...

News

Google has closed its deal to acquire fitness wearables company Fitbit, even as probes by competition regulators in the United States and Australia are...

News

Google has sent emails to several digital lending mobile applications on its Play Store, requiring their operators to submit details of their regulatory and...

MediaNama is the premier source of information and analysis on Technology Policy in India. More about MediaNama, and contact information, here.

© 2008-2018 Mixed Bag Media Pvt. Ltd. Developed By PixelVJ

Subscribe to Daily Newsletter

    © 2008-2018 Mixed Bag Media Pvt. Ltd. Developed By PixelVJ