Google exposed user data, feared repercussions of disclosing to public

Google exposed personal data of almost 500,000 and didn't disclose it

Google Shutters Google+ Following Privacy Vulnerability

Earlier today, the Wall Street Journal reported Google discovered the flaw, which exposed the data of thousands of users, earlier this year.

Now, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal, and internal memo at Google warned that going public about the data leak would attract "immediate regulatory interest". Strobe found a sizeable flaw in Google+' APIs, meaning that malicious apps could extract data from profiles, such as name, email addresses, occupation, gender and age.

Google said that a detailed analysis ran over two weeks prior to patching the bug revealed "the Profiles of up to 500,000 Google+ accounts" may have been potentially affected. The company does say that it found no evidence to show that any developer was aware of the bug or that any profile data was misued.

In a blog post, the company admitted Google+ had failed to achieve "broad consumer or developer adoption" since it launched as a would-be Facebook rival in 2011.

The company added that it chose to sunset the consumer version of Google+ due to the significant challenges in creating and maintaining it and its very low usage.

The shutdown of the consumer version of the service will be completed over the next 10 months and the platform will be completely buried in August 2019.

Reuters Tech giant Google has said that its social network Google will be shut down after it was discovered that a bug exposed private data of up to 500,000 users to external developers.

Silhouettes of laptop and mobile device users are seen next to a screen projection of Google logo in this picture illustration taken March 28, 2018.

Because of all of this, Google announced that it would be shutting down Google+ for consumers.

Google's latest efforts may be a few months too late, but the company is trying its best to calm some nerves after the latest security breach disclosure.

In a statement, Google said it believed the problem was not serious enough to inform the public. Google CEO Sundar Pichai was allegedly briefed on the company's plan not to notify users about the bug.

Google found up to 438 apps that used this API and 496,951 users may have been affected by this bug.

Google, replying to requests for comment, defended its decision not to disclose.

Project Strobe will also lead to Google account holders getting more fine-grained controls over the data they share with apps, which now have overly broad access to user information, Google said.

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