Google shuts down Google+ following massive security flaw

Todd Singleton
October 10, 2018

The company said it didn't report the breach partly due to fears of regulatory scrutiny.

The Wall Street Journal separately reported Monday that Google executives delayed announcing problems with Google+ because of concerns about its reputation and the danger of sparking new pushes for regulation.

"The bug meant that apps also had access to Profile fields that were shared with the user, but not marked as public", Google's vice-president of engineering, Ben Smith wrote.

Smith said Google+ would wind down over the next ten months, during which time users will be able to download or migrate their data, and the site would be permanently retired in August 2019. Google said it immediately fixed the security flaw and had not uncovered evidence that the information was mishandled by any of hundreds of third-party developers that may have had access to the user data. The bug allowed for developers that had access to Google+'s API to access information of users that gave permission to the program.

Google+ was created in 2011 and never seemed to gain much traction in the social media sphere, and eventually Google turned it into the underlying account infrastructure connecting its various Google software products, so you might not even realize if you're a member. It said it had no evidence that any third-party developer was aware of the bug or had misused profile data. That means we can not confirm which users were impacted by this bug.

Intel Announces New Core i9 Family, 9th Generation CPUs
The Core i9-9900K has eight cores and 16 threads, clocked at 3.6GHZ and up to 5GHz with a 16MB cache and 95W TDP. All of the new 9th Gen Core-X CPUs support up to 68 PCIe 3.0 lanes and quad-channel DDR4 at 2666MHz.

Limo that crashed in NY , killing 20, failed inspection
Those killed included two pairs of newlyweds, two brothers from one family, and four sisters from another, reported Reuters. Among the dead are four sisters , three of whom were with their husbands, according to the siblings' aunt, Barbara Douglas.

Sanchez, Judge power Yankees past Red Sox 6-2 to even ALDS
The Yankees' were 53-28 there during the regular season, the second-best home record behind Boston's 57-24. His 7-0 recorded with a 2.69 ERA since being dealt to NY by the Blue Jays on July 31 was just part of it.

A spokeswoman for Google said that whenever user data may have been affected it determines whether to tell people based on a number of criteria. Y'know...other than users' data, and consumer trust.

Google today revealed it'd be shutting down the consumer version of Google+ in response to a previously undisclosed security flaw - and also because no one's really using it.

Google has admitted that adoption of the its social network and subsequent user engagement has been low, with 90% of Google+ user sessions lasting for less than five seconds.

"We have many enterprise customers who are finding great value in using Google+ within their companies", the internet firm said.

While Google says there is no clear misuse of profile data that occurred as a result of this breach, MacMillan of the Journal says it raises questions about the company's commitment to user privacy. Google is also following from its limiting of Gmail scans by limiting which applications - namely, down to email apps - can do so.

Other reports by Free-Prsite

Discuss This Article

FOLLOW OUR NEWSPAPER