Google has just announced that it is closing down it’s Google+ service for consumers. This shutdown is due to lack of adoption and a massive data breach of its consumer’s data.
Google+ was originally Google’s answer to major social media competitors such as Facebook. Outside of diehard Google fans, the company struggled to add new users. One attempt was to leverage it’s dominance in search by integration Google+ in a number of areas throughout its service portfolio to get businesses and consumers on board. This action resulted in a large number of empty and unused Google+ pages being created. According to a blog post, 90 percent of Google+ user sessions last for less than five seconds.
The biggest impact to the decision to shut down Google+, however, was a recently exposed data breach reported by the Wall Street Journal.
The data breach came from a bug in one of Google+’s People API’s. It had granted apps access to data from Google+ profiles not marked public. This information included users name, email, occupation, gender, and age. Google stated that the bug had been patched in March 2018. However, Google never disclosed this breach and are still unaware exactly how many users were affected.
Google+ as a service will close to consumers but the company will still offer Google+ as an internal social network for enterprise customers.
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