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Thread: Does Ubuntu 12.04 come with Spyware?

  1. #1
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    Does Ubuntu 12.04 come with Spyware?

    I recently read this article http://askubuntu.com/questions/22657...u-with-spyware

    I ran the command, sudo apt-get remove unity-shopping-lens
    I was than told I do not have this package on my Ubuntu.
    Does this mean im clean of the spyware? OR do i have to remove the Unity panels and go back to gnome3?

    Like it says here
    https://sites.google.com/site/howtom...04notterrible/

    Thanks in advance

    Psil0
    PsiloCybin "Bye bye windows, hello Linux" PsiloCybin


  2. #2
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    Re: Does Ubuntu 12.04 come with Spyware?

    No. you don't have any spyware in 12.04, nor very much 'online' from the Dash, the only 2 that show online results are -
    unity-scope-musicstores
    unity-scope-video-remote

    As far as your 2nd link, well, idiots are plentiful on the web.

  3. #3
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    Re: Does Ubuntu 12.04 come with Spyware?

    Hi Psil0cybin.

    The first concern is related to version 12.10 and above. 12.04 does not have that issue.

    Regarding zeitgeist, I would recommend further reading. Start with this: Ubuntu 12.04 will bring OS-level privacy options, and Got privacy? Ubuntu Linux 12.04 will help ensure it (points to this article).

    Regards.

  4. #4
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    Re: Does Ubuntu 12.04 come with Spyware?

    Online searches can be turned off System Settings > Privacy.

    ...and if your of the belief that it's spyware just remove the offending packages.

    Don't think the shopping lens is in 12.04.

    The info from Zeitgeist is only used locally in the dash and you can determine what it logs.
    You can turn logging off completely if you want.
    Zeitgeist is a service which logs the user's activities and events (files
    opened, websites visited, conversations held with other people, etc.) and
    makes the relevant information available to other applications.

  5. #5
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    Re: Does Ubuntu 12.04 come with Spyware?

    Unity Shopping isn't Spyware or Adware. It Canonical's equvilent of ad-assisted software like seen on free Android apps. It's meant to help Canonical keep going. Zietgeist (Watching Ghost), Only allows for data sharing on your own PC and dosen't send the data anywhere. In fact, Zeitgiest has been used since Oneric for the original Unity. It didn't become an issue untill Shopping came about.

    Anyways, I remember reading somewhere that a Canonical Employee was giving thoughts on Unity and its supposed spyware/adware to a linux news article. Unfortuantly I can't remember where, but he did say something along the lines of "If you are concerned about Ubuntu sending your data over the internet in the form of helpfull search queries, Ubuntu might not be for you."

  6. #6
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    Re: Does Ubuntu 12.04 come with Spyware?

    Quote Originally Posted by ManamiVixen View Post
    Unity Shopping isn't Spyware or Adware. It Canonical's equvilent of ad-assisted software like seen on free Android apps. It's meant to help Canonical keep going. Zietgeist (Watching Ghost), Only allows for data sharing on your own PC and dosen't send the data anywhere. In fact, Zeitgiest has been used since Oneric for the original Unity. It didn't become an issue untill Shopping came about.

    Anyways, I remember reading somewhere that a Canonical Employee was giving thoughts on Unity and its supposed spyware/adware to a linux news article. Unfortuantly I can't remember where, but he did say something along the lines of "If you are concerned about Ubuntu sending your data over the internet in the form of helpfull search queries, Ubuntu might not be for you."
    (SO is what you are saying, that Ubuntu cannot be trusted? - or that it is becoming more lenient to giving out information?)

    If I remove the following packages in Unity would i Break it in any way shape or form
    "unity-scope-musicstores
    unity-scope-video-remote"

    Also Could I turn off the Zeitgeist feature using settings > privacy ?
    Or do I need to do something else.
    Thanks in advance
    I just wish Ubuntu would not integrate this stuff into the desktop, any tracking of any kind that goes publicly uploaded, is not good..
    If someone breaches into the server, they would be able to copy all that data! I Love Ubuntu and dont want to switch to another distro...but I dont like this one bit..
    I switched away from Windows 7 to stay as far away from logging as possible.
    I wont mind the changes as long as it is easy to ensure, that I can turn it off and it is not running.
    psil0
    Last edited by Psil0cybin; March 25th, 2013 at 09:49 PM.
    PsiloCybin "Bye bye windows, hello Linux" PsiloCybin


  7. #7
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    Re: Does Ubuntu 12.04 come with Spyware?

    Removing those packages are safe, but the music and video lens won't be of much use afterwards. Also it is advised to leave zeitgeist alone as Unity really can't function without it. In fact the the switch in the privacy window just stops it from recording, but keeps it running in the background. Also, all the lenses will stop either stop working or will be terribly impared if that switch is thrown or zeitgeist is removed since they all get their data from it. Have you though about using Xubuntu?
    Last edited by ManamiVixen; March 25th, 2013 at 09:53 PM.

  8. #8
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    Re: Does Ubuntu 12.04 come with Spyware?

    You can be certain you're not being logged or having your data sent to Canonical by simply not using Unity- try Xubuntu, Gnubuntu, Kubuntu or Lubuntu.
    While I no longer recommend vanilla Ubuntu because of this policy being opt-out, the folks behind the other versions (Lubuntu in particular) are turning out some first class distros with all the great hardware support and software availability of standard Ubuntu.

  9. #9
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    Re: Does Ubuntu 12.04 come with Spyware?

    I use Xubuntu on my smaller laptop,
    but I am wondering if I remove all those packages..Could I trust that I am not being logged?
    Or could this be deeper in the O.S than I am aware of ?
    Or should I lose trust in Ubuntu all together?
    Im just shocked, that they are planning to add all these things 12.10...
    Its so sad, I really really really really loved Ubuntu
    as it is the only Linux Distro that came with installed drivers for my computer.
    I wish they could make Two Different O.S based on the needs you want.\
    I Could see how some people could find it usefull, I personally do not...nor do I want people to know what im using my desktop for...
    so sad

    Would I be able to switch to gnome classic? Sticking to gnome but removing the Unity out of it?
    PsiloCybin "Bye bye windows, hello Linux" PsiloCybin


  10. #10
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    Re: Does Ubuntu 12.04 come with Spyware?

    Quote Originally Posted by ManamiVixen View Post
    Removing those packages are safe, but the music and video lens won't be of much use afterwards.
    That is totally incorrect - those 2 packages only enable online search results for the music & video lens, in no way affects the use of those lens for local files.

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