Google said that it plans a Google+ shut down over the next 10 months. While this action has long been anticipated due to low usage, a security breach prompted closing Google+. Google says services will continue for enterprise customers who use it for co-worker communication. But, for most of us, Google+ is no more.
Update Dec. 12, 2018: Google reveals another leak in Google+ exposed data of 52.5 million users. Thus, they are expediting the shutdown of Google+ from August 2019 to April 2019. PUMC recommends that you delete your Google+ account to protect your privacy. Greg Washington, PUMC president, said, “Our clients established a personal Google+ page to manage their practice listings. Since Google business listings moved to Google My Business, there is no reason to retain a page that jeopardizes your private information.”
Steps to Take Due to Google+ Shut Down
Website Icon Link: Social icons are typically on website headers as quick links to your social media presence. If Google+ (G+) links to your website, it is time to delete or replace that icon. If you use the Google My Business (GMB) feature post regularly, consider replacing your G+ with a GMB icon. If you have no plans to use the feature post option on GMB, simply delete the Google+ icon. Contact us if you aren’t sure how to get a short URL for your GMB posts.
Download Data: Inactive Google+ business pages were deleted last August. Google My Business became separate from Google+ in 2017. So, your business contact information that appears in search results is safe. Most of us won’t need to download data. However, G+ active users may wish to download data or pictures using Google Takeout prior to the Google+ shut down.
Delete Your Google+ Page(s): Your G+ page(s) go away when Google+ shuts down. However, you can delete your profile at any time you wish. Use caution that you only delete your Google+ profile and not your entire Google account. Many of our clients use Google for YouTube, Google My Business, Gmail, photos, etc. Follow Google’s directions to delete only your profile.
Google Implementing Security Features
Google recognizes that any security breach of personal information is significant. As part of Google’s Project Strobe, the company says they will implement several additional security features. While we don’t have all the details yet, Google says that the additional security will include:
- More granular Google Account permissions that appear in individual dialog boxes
- Limit types of apps that are permitted to access Gmail
- Limit apps’ ability to receive Call Log and SMS permissions on Android devices
- Discontinue availability of contact interaction data via the Android Contacts API
Google, as well as all Internet technology, is always changing and evolving. The Google+ shut down is the latest news. If you aren’t keeping up, you are lagging behind. PUMC does not simply notify our clients of changes. We assess how changes will impact each client’s marketing efforts and bottom line. Then, we recommend a path forward. If you aren’t sure that you are keeping up with the ever-changing Internet world, call us for an assessment.