Another Google+ Data Breach Exposed Personal Information of 52 Million Users
Google+, which two months ago revealed that it hid knowledge of a bug that exposed details of a half-million users [https://nuvisionfederal.com/blog/blog-post/memberresources/2018/10/18/how-to-protect-your-information-after-google-and-facebook-data-breaches], just announced another data breach that the exposed personal information of 52.2 million users.
In that October 2018 announcement, Google said that it would shut down the consumer version of Google+. Now, with the latest data breach, Google has decided to do it sooner rather than later.
All users must decide for themselves whether the benefit of continuing to use the dying social media network outweighs the risk of having their personal information exposed in another data breach. However, given that the consumer version of Google+ won’t be around much longer, now is a good time to consider closing your Google+ account and deleting your information.
Consumer Google+ to end in April 2019
If you use Google+, it’s likely that you use what’s known as the consumer version. However, it’s also likely that you don’t use it very much. Google+ has 395 million monthly active users, but 90 percent of user sessions last less than five seconds.
There is an enterprise version of Google+ that is used by businesses and organizations. That version will continue to operate. In the wake of the latest data breach, Google said that it is expediting changes to Google+ and moved its planned closure from August 2019 to April 2019.
If you want to delete your account
Google’s blog post that announced the data breach said, “No third party compromised our systems, and we have no evidence that the developers who inadvertently had this access for six days were aware of it or misused it in any way.”
This is the second Google+ data breach announcement since October. Given that relatively few people use the platform, and those that do don’t use it very much, you might want to consider deleting your Google+ account if you have one.
If you choose to go that route, CNET explains the steps to delete Google+:
- First, download your data -- https://takeout.google.com/settings/takeout
- Delete your Google+ profile – http://plus.google.com/downgrade
- If you have the Google+ Android app on your phone or tablet, disable or delete it
- Android – https://www.digitaltrends.com/mobile/how-to-uninstall-apps-in-android/
- iPhone or iPad – https://www.imore.com/how-delete-apps
Make sure you really want to delete your Google+ profile. Once you go through the steps above, there’s no going back. It’s gone. If you don’t choose to delete it now, it’ll be gone by April anyway.
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