Mohr wrote:Why, tdockery97, don't you adress the main topic here of false declaration of functionalities / cheating on users?
Once again: The entry field where you find "google.com" can be edited but it doesn't change the fact you obviously want to change - the continious ping to Google.
To tdockery97, CLEM and others...
Mohr is 100% right here.
People trust LM because they heard from many people that "Linux is more secure than Windows," etc.
When you look at the code, though, it sends data from your computer without asking.
You say it's harmless. Baloney.
The fact is, there are two types of people: 1)those who feel that Google are basically good guys, and 2) those that find disturbing trends in their behavior. Unfortunately, many smart people, including very talented programmers, are part of group 2. Group 2 is very mistaken.
Google Street View WiFi data if just one CLEAR example that they want to be big brother. They say the vacuumed up wifi data from peoples homes by accident. Boloney. They wrote a PATENT about how to vacuum up the data a year prior. So the engineer and the patent guys and the implementation guys all coincidentally made the same mistake? Wow, amazing! Then to avoid heavy fines, they said, "We'll delete it all." An audit came along a year later, and... the data was still there. They said, "Oops, we FORGOT to delete it."
Google has a long track record of creepy behavior (analyzing your personal email for profit, anyone?) To suggest that users on this forum should just give up and expect no privacy is silly. All-or-none, get-over-it, and nothing-to-hide answers are not helping users, like us, who are not experts, but would like to have some balance and control over what is happening by using the powers of choice and software tuning.
Mint dropped the ball here, and I'll explain why.
Programing principle #1 - The USER has control over the USER'S data and communications, this includes IP address. If ANY program is going to go onto the internet, it should have a pop-up box saying, "Would you like to allow MintUpdate to sent a packet to Google to verify connectivity?.... check here to not be asked this in the future."
Programming principle #2 - Messages and Interface with the user should be accurate, not misleading!
The mint update menu EDIT > PREFERENCES > UPDATE METHOD > Internet Check (domain name or IP address) is MISLEADING. It does not change the updater.
Many people chose Linux Mint because of the widespread opinion that... 1)linux, and it's developers, value your privacy, 2)that they try to minimize connections to large for-profit companies, 3)that they don't build back doors into the systems, 4)that they care about transparency and open source code, 5)that they want systems and their data to be under control of the user.
Regarding these points
1) Why should Google know every time your computer was turned on (via mintupdate script) be a default setting on a fresh Mint install? Read in the news the revelations about "real-time event monitoring". Inform yourself, please.
2) Why not choose a non-profit linux server instead of Google, a known data aggregator? Interesting choice of domain...
3) Why is openssh-server installed by default, allowing any fresh mint install with a weak password to be compromised?
4) Why is the updater menu misleading to the user?
5) Why isn't there a pop-up or other notification whenever mint wants to make outgoing connections?
Again to those who dismiss privacy concerns of others, you might want to inform yourself a bit more:
IDG News Service - When it comes to protecting the privacy of its users, Google Inc. ranks worse than any other Internet company, according to an interim report by Privacy International. The international watchdog group also accused Google of engaging in a smear campaign in response to its findings, and demanded an apology.
Privacy International's findings (PDF format), based on six months of research, placed Google at the bottom of 23 Internet companies examined by the group. Google was the only company to earn the bottom ranking, for "comprehensive consumer surveillance and entrenched hostility to privacy."
Other companies, such as Microsoft Corp. and Yahoo Inc., rated slightly better that Google. Microsoft was given a rating of four out of six, for "serious lapses in privacy practices." Yahoo was given a ranking of five of six, one better than Google, for "substantial and comprehensive privacy threats."
"We are aware that the decision to place Google at the bottom of the ranking is likely to be controversial, but throughout our research we have found numerous deficiencies and hostilities in Google's approach to privacy that go well beyond those of other organizations," Privacy International said.
Hopefully, mint will clear up its ambivalence to good code and privacy.