Google+ to be killed after bug exposed up to 500,000 accounts

10 October, 2018, 16:26 | Author: Rodolfo Hawkins
  • 20 2017 shows logos of US multinational technology company Google displayed on computers&apos screens.- Google celebrated its 20th birthday

Google is shutting down its long-neglected Facebook competitor Google+ following the disclosure of a vulnerability that could have resulted in third-party developers accessing private data from around 500,000 users, the company announced Monday. It said it had no evidence that any third-party developer was aware of the bug or had misused profile data.

Up to 438 apps used the application programming interface (API) that gave access to Profile data such as users' name, email address, occupation, gender and age.

A flaw was discovered in March that exposed personal information of up to 500,000 people. Others include limiting what sorts of data that can be collected per transaction when users share their Gmail accounts and phone numbers.

The cover up: According to a report in The Wall Street Journal, Google discovered a bug in Google+ code in March and promptly fixed it, but decided not to reveal its existence.

Google+ was heavily promoted after its 2011 launch, in the hope of overtaking Facebook in the early days of social media.

Google's excuse is that it found no evidence of any of the data being misused, however, it also has no way of being sure of that.

The firm has also promised to institute new security rules, including limits around the types of use cases that are permitted to access consumer Gmail data.

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Google also said it would begin restricting the data it provides to outside developers.

Now, after several years of speculation that it was going to be shut down, Google is bringing Google+ for consumers to an end.

The API allowed users to grant access to their and their friends' profile information to apps.

Despite that, the company plans to keep Google+ operational as an enterprise product, allowing companies to use it as an internal communication platform for employees. As of the time of this writing, it is impossible to know who had what information leaked.

90 per cent of Google+ user sessions are less than five seconds, the company said.

. In addition, Google Account permissions dialog boxes will be split to show each requested permission, one at a time, within its own dialog box.

Today, after over 7 years of existence, Google is shutting down Google+ for good-although its low user base surprisingly wasn't the main factor behind this decision.

Google admits that Google+ has failed to achieve broad consumer or developer adoption since its introduction.

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