Google Shuts Down Google

10 October, 2018, 13:29 | Author: Sammy Rose
  • Google Shuts Down Google

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". The service will be wound down over the next 10 months, with the ultimate shut-down coming in August 2019.

Now, "Only apps directly enhancing email functionality ... will be authorized to access this data", Smith assured. Google has also advised they will remove access to the contact interaction data from the Android Contacts API which allowed apps to show you your most recent contacts, within the next few months.

According to Google, data that may have potentially been disclosed only includes "static, optional Google+ Profile fields including name, email address, occupation, gender and age". However, it's possible that data were abused and Google just doesn't know about it yet. They were able to determine that the bug was not misused during the two weeks that they had log data.

The Wall Street Journal separately reported Monday that Google executives delayed announcing problems with Google+ because of concerns about its reputation and the danger of sparking new pushes for regulation. The Wall Street Journal's Douglas MacMillan and Robert McMillan report that Google was anxious about public perception and regulatory scrutiny, and that Google wanted to avoid comparisons with Facebook, which at the time was dealing with its own data privacy scandal.

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"Every year, we send millions of notifications to users about privacy and security bugs and issues".

Google has denied the newspaper's accusations, saying it determined its course of action based on the data involved in the breach, lack of evidence of data misuse and the challenge of determining precisely how many and which users were affected.

In an internal memo, Google's legal team advised against revealing the incident as it would create "immediate regulatory interest and invite comparisons to Facebook's leak of user information to data firm Cambridge Analytica", according to the WSJ's report.

Yet, Ben Smith, a Google Fellow and its Vice President of Engineering, says shuttering Google+ has more to do with its low popularity. One of the findings that stemmed from Project Strobe was that the consumer version of Google+ was no longer worth maintaining. "Given these challenges and the very low usage of the consumer version of Google+, we made a decision to sunset the consumer version of Google+".

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