Google Plus to shut down early after second security flaw revealed

Google on Monday said it would shut down its social network faster than expected amid evidence that a second technical glitch may have exposed the personal data of 52 million more users than previously known.

The tech giant announced last October that it would shut down Google Plus due to low usage and cybersecurity challenges, noting that it had patched a bug in March 2018 that had briefly exposed private information of roughly 500,000 users. The leaked information included names, email addresses and other sensitive details.

In a new blog post, Google said it will shutter the platform within the next 90 days after discovering a second bug briefly allowed app developers to view the personal data of about 52.5 million users. The bug revealed details such as name, email address and occupation, but did not give developers access to financial data.

“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,” said David Thacker, Google’s vice president of product management.

The disclosure comes one day before Google CEO Sundar Pichai is set to testify before Congress to address concerns about political bias on its platforms. President Trump has repeatedly criticized the tech giant in recent months, arguing that it suppresses conservative voices.