Google+ shutdown speeds up, new privacy bug affected 52.5 million users

The logo of Google is seen outside their headquarters building in Mountain View California

The logo of Google is seen outside their headquarters building in Mountain View California

"We understand that our ability to build reliable products that protect your data drives user trust", David Thacker, vice president of product management for Google's G Suite products, said in a blog post.

The disclosure comes one day before Google CEO Sundar Pichai is set to testify before Congress to address concerns about political bias on its platforms. Of course, Google+'s "low usage" also played a part in the decision to wrap things up for the social network as well.

A little less than two months ago, it was announced that Google+ would be closing its doors to consumers in August 2019 following a three-year-long data breach.

Whoever's doing that might want to do it fast - there's no telling when the next security bug will come along and force Google to accelerate the shutdown even more. Google said it delayed the release of the information because it was initially uncertain about which users were affected or that the data had been misused. However, the company said there's "no evidence" that any third party compromised Google's systems or misused the data.

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Google will shutter its struggling social network Google+ sooner than previously announced: The company said Monday that Google+ will shut down in April of 2019. The site will now shut down completely in April, rather than August, and access to the API network will be cut off in the next 90 days.

In addition, apps with access to a user's Google+ profile data also had access to the profile data that had been shared with the consenting user by another Google+ user but that was not shared publicly.

The bug, which was introduced to Google+ in November, allowed developers to access personal profile information including name, birthday, gender, nickname and more even if those users had limited access to that information. "We have always taken this seriously, and we continue to invest in our privacy programs to refine internal privacy review processes, create powerful data controls, and engage with users, researchers, and policymakers to get their feedback and improve our programs".

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