Google Exposed User Data, Feared Repercussions of Disclosing to Public

Douglas MacMillan and Robert McMillan report:

Google exposed the private data of hundreds of thousands of users of the Google+ social network and then opted not to disclose the issue this past spring, in part because of fears that doing so would draw regulatory scrutiny and cause reputational damage, according to people briefed on the incident and documents reviewed by The Wall Street Journal.

Read more on WSJ.

So Google is shutting down Google+ after finding a vulnerability that exposed 500,000 users’ personal information.

But that’s not the big story. The big story is that they found the vulnerability, addressed it in March, and made a conscious decision NOT to disclose it back then, for fear of regulators.

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