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Google shares fall amid Google+ data security flaw

Google shares closed lower in the US Monday, after confirming there had been a potential data breach in its Google+ network. The tech behemoth said it would now shut down the consumer version of Google+ and rebuild an updated version for enterprise.

Google added that to its knowledge, the bug that would have made some private user data available to developers, had not been utilised.

Google shares ended the US Monday trading session 1.02% lower at $1,155.92. The stock is also currently in the red, out-of-hours.

Google+ security flaw

Following an WSJ report that Google+ user data had been exposed to a security flaw, the tech giant posted a blog on the topic. Sundar Pichai’s firm said that during a complete review of all its applications and processes, it had discovered the problem in March this year.

It has patched the flaw and while it doesn’t have any evidence that the problem was utilised by developers, it was there for three years, suggesting that claim isn’t an easy one to substantiate.

“The review did highlight the significant challenges in creating and maintaining a successful Google+ that meets consumers’ expectations,” said Google’s VP of engineering, Ben Smith. “Given these challenges and the very low usage of the consumer version of Google+, we decided to sunset the consumer version of Google+”.

Google exits Pentagon Cloud contract race

In other Google news, the tech giant confirmed to news agency Bloomberg, that was no longer in the running to bid for the US Pentagon’s $10 billion cloud computing contract.

This is a development that has been rumoured for some months, as Google’s employees and some of its leadership team, were unsure Google’s values could support the use of its Artificial Intelligence tech by the Pentagon.

“We are not bidding on the JEDI (Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure) contract because first, we couldn’t be assured that it would align with our AI Principles,” Google said in a statement to the news group. “And second, we determined that there were portions of the contract that were out of scope with our current government certifications.”

About the author

Ilona Billington
Ilona is a freelance writer and editor with over 15 years experience reporting and writing about UK and European economics, real estate, financial markets and central banks.

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