Google Plus social network to shut down after major security lapse

Google Plus social network to shut down after major security lapse

Google will gradually shut down the consumer version of its long-shunned social network Plus, after the search giant disclosed on Monday it had discovered a security lapse that may have exposed the personal information of up to 500,000 users. But Google says it has no way of confirming these numbers or which users may have had their data exposed improperly.

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. "None of these thresholds were met in this instance", the company said. However, a report by The Wall Street Journal newspaper suggested that the Mountain View, California, company wanted to avoid drawing regulatory scrutiny.

Google said it patched the bug in March this year, and Smith said Google found no evidence that any developer was aware of the bug or had abused the API.

One of the changes that Google is making to help give users even more control over their data is more in-depth permission dialog boxes.

Amazon Sale on Laptops: Get up to Rs 55,000 off on Laptops
While Amazon's Great Indian Festival offers discounts across products, there are other offers as well that go along with it. OnePlus 6 , the flagship smartphone from the Chinese smartphone maker, is being discounted by Rs 5,000 during the sale.

But it's not doing so exclusively out of concern for users' privacy: Smith admitted the network is not a success, saying "The consumer version of Google+ now has low usage and engagement: 90 percent of Google+ user sessions are less than five seconds".

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. In the aftermath of what appears to have been a major security flaw within Google+, the company ended up not disclosing the breach of information to its users. The consumer version of Google+ now has low usage and engagement: "90% of Google+ user sessions are less than five seconds". Gmail add-on access will also be restricted to a small number of developers as part of the moves.

Google, replying to requests for comment, defended its decision not to disclose.

Google's plan to withdraw the free version of Google+, scheduled for August, could help strengthen its case to US policymakers and regulators that it is different from Facebook, which has faced political heat over allegations that data belonging to 87 million of its users was improperly shared with political consultancy Cambridge Analytica.

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