Google+ to be shut down before expected due to new bug

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The consumer version of the social network will be closed in April instead of August for the detection of a new error that has affected millions

According to reports of experts in digital forensics from the International Institute of Cyber Security, after discovering a new API bug in Google+, the company has decided to anticipate the shutdown of this platform’s consumer version.

Google had already announced the closing of its social network after, last October; a bug in the Google+ API software began a controversy related to the privacy of its users. Although the closure of the platform had been announced for the month of August 2019, Google decided to advance the process after a new error compromised the information of about 52 million users.

David Thacker, vice president of product management for G Suite mentioned: “After discovering this new incident, we have decided to accelerate the shutdown of every Google+ API, a goal that will be completed in about 90 days. In addition, we decided to advance the closure of the consumer platform, instead of August 2019, Google+ will close in April 2019.”

The most recent bug was solved in the latest software update, launched last November. According to experts in digital forensics, this bug would have allowed multiple applications requesting permission to access user data obtaining full permissions, even if the user profile did not allow this action.  This bug also allowed some applications to access shared information between two Google+ users even if their profiles were not public.

“We discovered this incident during a routine procedure, the error was solved a week after being discovered,” the Google official mentioned. “Thanks to the evidence we have collected, we can conclude that no third party has compromised our systems, we can also confirm that the developers did not misuse these anomalous accesses and permissions”.

A couple of months ago Google was wrapped in controversy due to an error in an API software of its social network that was discovered by its own digital forensics team. The bug allowed external developers to access private data from Google+ profiles. Apparently, the error persisted on the platform since the year 2015.

The company suffered a hard backlash to its image after the error was discovered, because they decided not to make it public at the time. In fact, the technology company made no mention of the error until media such as Wall Street Journal began to investigate the event. At that time Google’s response was to announce the decision to close Google+, a process that would take the company about 10 months, according to the company’s reports.