Rick Forno of InfoWarrior noted this concerning entry on github:
This repository provides a corpus of network communications automatically sent to Apple by OS X Yosemite; we’re using this dataset to explore how Yosemite shares user data with Apple.
The provided data was collected using our Net Monitor toolkit; more information regarding usage and methodology is provided below.
The following occur with all privacy options enabled — including disabling analytics (i.e., Diagnostics and Usage Data).
About this Mac
When the user selects ‘About this Mac’ from the Apple menu, Yosemite phones home and
s_vi, a unique analytics identifier, is included in the request. (
si_viis used by Adobe/Omniture’s analytics software).
If we search the logs for the cookie value, we can find:
- Where the identifying cookie was first set — when the user visited http://www.apple.com in Safari, with an expiration of two years.
- Where else the cookie is sent to Apple — for example, when both Spotlight and Help phone home.
DuckDuckGo for Privacy
Having read DuckDuckGo’s privacy statements, you might decide to switch Safari’s default search to DuckDuckGo. If we enter a new search in Safari, we can then search the logged data to see who the search terms are actually sent to.
The logs show that a copy of your Safari searches are still sent to Apple, even when selecting DuckDuckGo as your search provider, and ‘Spotlight Suggestions’ are disabled in System Preferences > Spotlight.
Read more on GitHub.