With the news of another data leak, the borrowed time that beleaguered platform Google+ faced has been reduced even further and will now close for consumers in April, rather than 4 months later in August as originally planned.
The New Vulnerability
According to Google, the new vulnerability impacted 52.5 million users, who could have had profile information like their name, email address, occupation, and age exposed to developers, even if their account was set to private. Apps could also access profile data that had been shared with a specific user but was not shared publicly.
“We’ve recently determined that some users were impacted by a software update introduced in November that contained a bug affecting a Google+ API. We discovered this bug as part of our standard and ongoing testing procedures and fixed it within a week of it being introduced. No third party compromised our systems, and we have no evidence that the app developers that inadvertently had this access for six days were aware of it or misused it in any way.
With the discovery of this new bug, we have decided to expedite the shut-down of all Google+ APIs; this will occur within the next 90 days. In addition, we have also decided to accelerate the sunsetting of consumer Google+ from August 2019 to April 2019. While we recognize there are implications for developers, we want to ensure the protection of our users.”
Next Steps for Consumer Google+
All Google+ APIs will be wound down over the coming days as Google decided to give users ample opportunity to transition off of consumer Google+. Over the next few months, they will issue regular statements with additional information, including ways that data can be safely and securely downloaded to be migrated to other platforms.
A Note for Enterprise Customers
“G Suite administrators are always in control of their users’ apps. This ensures that G Suite users can give access only to apps that have been vetted and are trusted by their organization. In addition, we want to reiterate that we will continue to invest in Google+ for enterprise. More details were announced in October.”
What Comes Next?
With the recent updates to the GMB (Google My Business) dashboard, the ability to make posts, share images and provide general information has already ensured that many of the options which were available with G+ are now available elsewhere.
To see how GMB can be used to benefit businesses, especially those with a focus on local custom, please click here.
If you’d like to speak to us regarding any of our services, including our online marketing services, please give us a call on 01883 372488 or contact us via Facebook and we’ll be happy to talk you through your options.
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