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For a successful business, you need a viable business idea, the skills to make it work and the funding. Discover whether your idea has what it takes.

Forming your business correctly is essential to ensure you are protected and you comply with the rules. Learn how to set up your business.

It is likely you will need funding to start your business unless you have your own money. Discover some of the main sources of start up funding.

Businesses and individuals must account for and pay various taxes. Understand your tax obligations and how to file, account and pay any taxes you owe.

Businesses are required to comply with a wide range of business laws. We introduce the main rules and regulations you must comply with.

Learn why business planning is an essential exercise if your business is to start and grow successfully, attract funding or target new markets.

Marketing matters. It drives sales and helps promote your brand and products. Discover how to market your business and reach your target customers.

Some businesses need a high street location whilst others can be run from home. Understand the key factors from cost to location, size to security.

Your employees can your biggest asset. They can also be your biggest challenge. We explain how to recruitment and manage staff successfully.

It is likely your business could not function without some form of IT. Learn how to specify, buy, maintain and secure your business IT.

Few businesses manage the leap from start up to high-growth business. Learn what it takes to scale up and take your business to the next level.

Google+ for consumers is to close

8 October 2018

Google+ for consumers is to closeGoogle is pulling the plug on Google+ for consumer users as it emerges that a bug in its software has caused serious data breaches.

Google has said that up to 500,000 Google+ users have been affected and that their private information may have been accessed by third parties. According to the Wall Street Journal, Google has known about this issue since March of this year.

Google has said that up to 438 third-party applications may have had access to private user information because of the bug. Google+ was launched in 2011 but it has never attracted a significant popular following.

Ben Smith, Google's vice president of engineering, announced the news in a company blog. He said a company review of Google+ had concluded that there were "significant challenges in creating and maintaining a successful Google+ that meets consumers' expectations. Given these challenges and the very low usage of the consumer version of Google+, we decided to sunset the consumer version of Google+."

The process of closing Google+ for consumers will take place over a number of months.

Smith said: "To give people a full opportunity to transition, we will implement this wind-down over a ten-month period, slated for completion by the end of next August. Over the coming months, we will provide consumers with additional information, including ways they can download and migrate their data."

Google says it will continue to offer private Google+ powered networks for businesses currently using the software.

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