Google and its parent company, Alphabet Inc. (GOOGL) - Get Report , have shut the Google+ social network due to a data breach that affected hundreds of thousands of users, the company said Monday, Oct. 8. However, the company waited months to publicly disclose the data breach, which occurred in the spring, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Google will wind down Google+ over a 10-month period that will conclude by the end of next August. Google disclosed a list of four actions it plans to take to help secure user privacy in a blog post that can be read here.
Google said that the personal-profile data for 500,000 Google+ users was compromised, though the company said that the information wasn't used for anything nefarious.
"Our Privacy & Data Protection Office reviewed this issue, looking at the type of data involved, whether we could accurately identify the users to inform, whether there was any evidence of misuse, and whether there were any actions a developer or user could take in response. None of these thresholds were met in this instance," the company said in the blog post.
Google didn't disclose the data breach because it feared increased regulatory scrutiny, according to the Journal. When contacted about the Journal story, Google pointed TheStreet to the blog post referenced above.
Google+ has struggled to gain traction as a viable social network that could challenge Facebook Inc. (FB) - Get Report or Twitter Inc. (TWTR) - Get Report , and its closure comes just seven years after it was established in 2011.
Shares of Google fell 1% on Monday.