Written by: Adam Christianson
Download today’s show here! MC20170205.mp3 [57.8 01:24:42 64kbps]
A podcast about all things Macintosh. For Mac geeks, by Mac geeks. Episode 602. Apple rocks their Q1 2017 earnings. Apple Watch power bands. Apple’s new beta have some nice surprises. Apple continues manufacturing deals. Apple moves International iTunes to Ireland. LG 5K displays have wi-fi issue. Rumors of ARM based Macs are back. TV app limited without wi-fi. Mail.app Drafts folder duplicates. Question about Siri and Apple Maps. How to hobble your Touch Bar.
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Adam, Thank you for your weekly work on behalf of the Mac community! As a long time listener and long time Mac user (…. since the 128K … !! ) I continue to enjoy the platform and your commentary.
Here is something I think should be brought to the attention of the Mac community:
I want to call to your attention something I discovered about six months ago, quite by accident or perhaps by serendipity: Apple Mail does not delete everything you tell it to delete! I brought this to the attention of Apple via a support ticket, but nothing has been done to correct the issue as of this writing.
Being a rather private person who wishes to keep my correspondence to myself, even in the event my computer is compromised I use POP mail and delete everything from my ISP’s server after downloading it to the only computer upon which I do email. I had noticed some time ago, that Apple Mail occasionally deletes, or at least cannot find some of my correspondence. Subsequent to that discovery I began using an email archiving program “Mail Steward Pro” which, running on a daily schedule creates a searchable MySQL database of my email.
This issue came to my attention when I ran a manual update to that database and was surprised to see some email which I knew I had previously deleted showing up in the progress window of the archive program. After the archive was complete I searched both Mail and the archive. Mail reported the email was not to be found, while the archive showed me the email and the file path to in my ~/library/mail/V4 ….. when I went to the location shown, behold there was an .emlx file, which when opened in a text editor was THE DELETED email !!
This I consider to be a breach of security by Apple. I have files which must be deleted, perhaps you do also. These .emlx files are not indexed by spotlight and so far as I have been able to discover cannot be located by any simple method. It was only by chance that I observed this while the archive program was reading and indexing my Mail folder.
I suspect that Mail marks messages either “to delete” or “deleted”, but then never actually deletes the messages. Upon closer inspection I can find hundreds of email which were supposedly deleted by Mail, yet which can be completely resurrected by re-archiving a selected date range using “Email Archiver Pro”. This behavior has serious implications for anyone who needs to actually delete a conversation! Consider a whistle blower at … your choice… Apple, Microsoft, the US State Department, or a political dissident in a repressive regime, etc. who needs to ex-filtrate incriminating information to law enforcement or their defense attorney or to the world privately. With this Mail failure, they ARE going to get caught!
To clarify and simplify: I have been using POP and deleting all of my downloaded mail from the ISP server. I can repeatedly resurrection deleted Mail using just my mac while it is NOT connected to the internet. This failure is entirely within Mail on my Mac and presumably in all of my backups as well.
I’m running all of the latest software from Apple, so this is a current and very real security concern for Mail users in any sensitive environment.