Google Kills Google+ in Wake of Security Vulnerability

Some of that qualifies as legally protected personally identifiable information, and its exposure could trigger scrutiny from federal and state regulators, including some who have probed Google before on similar issues.

Google said on Monday it would shut down the consumer version of its social network Google+ and tighten its data sharing policies after a "bug" potentially exposed user data that included name, email address, occupation, gender and age.

"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.

Google said it discovered and immediately patched the API bug in March 2018. "Given these challenges and the very low usage of the consumer version of Google+, we chose to sunset the consumer version of Google+", Google said in the blog announcement. Unlike in the European Union, where data breach notices are mandatory within three days of the event due to laws such as the recently passed GDPR, the US doesn't yet have federal laws regulating data breach notices. There are additional privacy moves in motion here, too, with Google's Project Strobe security audit also meaning most third-party developers will no longer be able to access Android SMS data, call logs, and (some) contact information.

Allegations of the improper use of data for 87 million Facebook users by Cambridge Analytica, which was hired by President Donald Trump's 2016 US election campaign, has hurt the shares of the world's biggest social network and prompted multiple official investigations in the USA and Europe. "Earlier this year, right at the time they discovered this, the Facebook Cambridge Analytica data breach had just happened, there's a lot of regulator scrutiny of Facebook and tech companies and how they're handling data, and internally, they were anxious about being pulled into this conversation in a bigger way". So a group of the company's executives ruled that the firm should stay quiet about the flaw, and reportedly informed Sundar Pichai, Google's CEO, of their decision. From that point forward, G+ will continue on as an enterprise product, where many companies seem to use it heavily.

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53-year-old WWE legend Shawn Michaels is coming out of retirement
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Drew Brees Isn't Focused On Passing Yardage Record
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For Google, a data privacy reckoning may finally come as a result of a service that it admits nearly no one uses much anymore.

Google launched the service in 2011 as a challenge to Facebook but noted in its blog post on Monday that Google "has not achieved broad consumer or developer adoption". Unfortunately, the reason they are finally shutting it down is because the service possibly exposed the data of 500,000 users' profiles.

"Every year, we send millions of notifications to users about privacy and security bugs and issues", a Google spokesman told AFP.

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

Google says it hasn't found any evidence that developers were aware of the bug, so it's unlikely that anyone abused it.

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