Google Plus to Shut Down after Glitch Compromises 5 Hundred Thousand Accounts

The consumer version of Google+ is going to shut down for next 10 months as stated by blog post published by Google. The decision to shut down the social media platform was made after a security flaw exposed the data of about 5 hundred thousand users.

Google has also stated that Google+ has been experiencing low usage and engagement and about 90% of sessions do not last longer than 5 seconds. However, the company is still planning to keep the service running on enterprise level. Google wants to promote Google+ as ‘secure corporate social network’ and this ironically sounds odd because this announcement was made alongside the new of user data breach.

Additionally, Google also announced the new privacy adjustment it would be making for other services that it caters. There will API changes limiting developers’ access to data on Android devices and Gmail. The company also stated that the consumer version of Gmail will also witness some user data policy updates. This policy will limit other apps and their scope of access to user data.

Google came up with four findings and four action plans to remediate those findings:

  1. The company said that it would face significant challenges in creating and maintaining a successful Google+ product that would meet consumer expectations after the data breach. This is why the consumer version of Google+ is shutting down.
  2. Google also stated that consumers want good control over the data they share with third party apps. In order to accomplish this, Google is going to be launching more granular account permissions that will be showing individual dialog boxes.
  3. Google also made a point that when users grant access to their Gmail, they do so with certain use case in their mind and the company will be limiting the types of use cases that are permitted.
  4. Finally, the company listed that when users grant permissions to SMS, Contacts and Phone Android apps, they do so with a use case in mind. Google will limit the apps’ ability to receive call logs and SMS permissions on Android devices and contact interaction data will be unavailable via the Android Contacts API.