Sci-tech

Google+ is officially shutting down

Google+ is officially shutting down

Google was hammered again a month later, when the Associated Press revealed the company was tracking users' locations even after they'd turned off their phones' location history setting.

The company responded in its blog post Monday by arguing that it had no evidence that anyone actually exploited the bug.

A Google spokesperson cited "significant challenges in creating and maintaining a successful Google+ that meets consumers' expectations" along with "very low usage" as the reasons for the move.

Alphabet Inc shares fell 1 per cent to $1,157.06, after earlier dropping to $1,135.40, the lowest intraday price since July 5.

As for what info was exposed, it's reported that "full names, email address, birth dates, gender, profile photos, placed lived, occupation, and relationship status" were all up for grabs.

In a blog post, Google vice president of engineering Ben Smith confirmed the company had found a "bug" that affected as many as 500,000 users. And it allowed third-party apps to gain access to users' data that was private. This method will better secure third party APIs with Google services, allowing for less data to be given to outside applications. Thankfully, according to Google, no developer was aware of the bug, was misusing the Google+ API, or had misused private data from users' profiles. The Google+ bug that's been discovered and disclosed was located in the Google+ People API.

According to the Journal, Google's legal and policy team warned senior executives at the company that disclosing the security flaw could lead to "immediate regulatory interest".

Google has made a decision to terminate its social media platform Google+ after a software glitch caused the search giant to expose the data of thousands of Google+ users. It's worth noting that Microsoft also has several active Google+ communities dedicated to its most popular Android apps such as the Microsoft Launcher, and it's not clear yet what will happen to them.

Google+ was launched in 2011, quickly becoming a failed attempt to compete with Facebook.

So, quite a few security and privacy changes were announced here.

Now, users will be given greater control over what account data they choose to share with each app. The office looks at what data was taken, what affected users need to be informed, if there was any evidence of data abuse, and whether or not users could effectively respond.

The firm is also ending access to contact interaction data on Android devices. So, for example, your default messaging app will have access to SMS permissions, and the default dialer can access Call Logs.


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