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50 Million Google+ Accounts Compromised in Latest Data Breach, Platform to Shut Down Earlier Than Planned

The discovery of another privacy flaw has pushed Google to shut down Google+ much earlier than expected.

Google announced on December 10 that it had discovered a security issue that potentially left more than 50 million accounts vulnerable in November. The revelation came shortly on the heels of a previous admission that a security lapse in March also affected thousands of users. Because of this, the company says Google+ will be shut down by April 2019.

Google initially planned to sunset the platform by August 2019. The company made the announcement to close its Google+ network in October, after it admitted that an earlier breach affected 500,000 users.

The latest bug was said to have been inadvertently created by a software patch that Google developed last month. It reportedly gave third-party apps access to account users’ profile data and exposed even information that wasn’t made public. It took the company six days to notice it and find a solution.

In a blog post, Google’s Vice President of Product Management, David Thacker, shared that “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.”

However, the bug made it possible for apps where users willingly shared their Google+ data to also access their friends’ profile or those of people who shared data with them. Google gave assurances though that it did not expose any passwords, financial data, or other sensitive details that could be used in identity theft.

The Alphabet-owned company had also suffered a security breach in March. That particular bug placed tens of thousands of users’ personal information at risk. The company waited half a year before it admitted to regulators and the public that there was a problem. The breach happened around the time Facebook was embroiled in the Cambridge Analytica controversy. Reports stated that Google delayed revealing the problem partly to avoid regulators from scrutinizing the company.

The admission that there was another security issue couldn’t have come at a worse time for the company. Google’s CEO, Sundar Pichai, was set to appear before the House Judiciary Committee on December 11 to be grilled about the company’s data practices.

Google+ will be shutting down all its APIs for developers within three months. However, the platform’s enterprise version will remain functional. Google also acknowledged on Monday that Google+ had a low number of users and that there were major obstacles to turning it into a successful product.

[Featured image via Google]

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Google releases Target Impression Share, its latest Smart Bidding strategy

The automated bidding feature aims to maximize reach and awareness.



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SearchCap: Google’s latest algorithm update, local SEO myths & the Mary G. Ross doodle

Below is what happened in search today, as reported on Search Engine Land and from other places across the web.



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SearchCap: Apple search ads, Google’s newest search features & latest carousel test

Below is what happened in search today, as reported on Search Engine Land and from other places across the web.

The post SearchCap: Apple search ads, Google’s newest search features & latest carousel test appeared first on Search Engine Land.



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Latest Chart Shows How Quickly Amazon is “Eating the Retail World”

CNBC is reporting that MKM Partners analyst Rob Sanderson’s latest chart shows a striking gap that has widened between Amazon and store-based retailers (Wal-Mart, Taraget, Costco, Home Depot, etc.) over the past year. While Amazon still only boasts a 5 percent share of total retail sales, excluding food, across the country, according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau, Sanderson’s chart shows Amazon, in the categories that the company serves, growing its market share, as brick-and-mortar retail sales are on the decline.

The median growth for what MKM Partners calls the top-20 U.S. retailers was 2.4 percent in the fourth quarter of 2016, 0.8 percent during the first quarter of 2017, and is forecast to decline by 0.2 percent in the second quarter this year, the firm said.

Notice how the gap completely shifted starting from 2013.

The latest hike in Amazon’s share price is “becoming large enough to make an impact,” Sanderson wrote. “This [trend] does not end well for traditional retailers and many will go the way of Borders and Circuit City, leaders in the first two large categories disrupted by Amazon.com.”

Sanderson states simply that Amazon is the “best long-term growth story available to investors today”

With an Amazon-Whole Foods deal in the making, pressure is about to hit traditional grocers head-on, as an internet giant takes on the “high-frequency” fresh foods market, MKM Partners added. “[P]ressures on traditional retailers will only get worse.”

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SearchCap: Bing Ads updates, latest Windows 10 release & the Jelly relaunch

Below is what happened in search today, as reported on Search Engine Land and from other places across the web.

The post SearchCap: Bing Ads updates, latest Windows 10 release & the Jelly relaunch appeared first on Search Engine Land.



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Microsoft blocks Google Chrome & other browsers from Cortana in latest Windows 10 release

Microsoft says blocking third-party browsers & search providers improves user experience and is in keeping with how competitors act with their own digital assistants.

The post Microsoft blocks Google Chrome & other browsers from Cortana in latest Windows 10 release appeared first on…



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Social advertising? Earned/owned social? Get the latest tactics at SocialPro.

We hear from three kinds of social media marketers: social media paid advertising specialists; organic (earned/owned) social specialists; and those responsible for both. Marketing Land’s SocialPro is for you, regardless of which description best fits you. SocialPro features sessions…



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Subscribe To The EJ Podcast And I’ll Send You My Latest And Greatest Interviews

The new EJ Podcast Email Newsletter is now up and running. Sign up today and I’ll send you my very best podcast interviews from my archives once week. You will also receive an email as soon as my latest podcast interviews are published. You can unsubscribe from any email at…

The post Subscribe To The EJ Podcast And I’ll Send You My Latest And Greatest Interviews appeared first on Entrepreneurs-Journey.com.

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Paula Patton Hands Robin Thicke His Latest Courtroom Defeat

Paula Patton and Robin Thicke are one step closer to being officially done.

Paula Patton was granted a divorce this week from singer Robin Thicke. The divorce will not be official until April 14.

Their divorce settlement terms are private, but are known to include specifics about the custody and child support of their four-year-old son Julian, spousal support, property division and attorney fees.

For weeks, Robin Thicke’s attempts to woo back his estranged wife were tabloid fodder. He named an entire album Paula, and let the world know that he really wanted another chance. But Paula Patton was done for good.

The divorce from Paula Patton is just the latest disappointment that Robin Thicke has been handed in the courtroom. Last week he and songwriting partners Pharrell and T.I. were ordered by a judge to pay the family of Marvin Gaye millions of dollars due to what the jury deemed to be an infringement on the copyright of Gaye’s music.

The song “Blurred Lines”, for which Robin Thicke had already caught a lot of heat due to its video, was determined to be a rip-off of Marvin Gaye’s “Got to Give It Up.”

Robin Thicke, Pharrell, and T.I. expressed disappointment in the ruling. They had actually preemptively challenged the notion that their song was so derivative of Marvin Gaye that it infringed his intellectual property. But they lost.

Now that Paula Patton has her date for their divorce to be final, Robin Thicke has some rebuilding to do in his life and career. But his song i still quite popular. With his name in the news as much as it is, he is not likely to go away anytime soon. And in the media game, visibility equals fame, and fame equals money when you know how to handle it right.


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