One possible solution would be for Canonical to proxy all third-party images and other content for Ubuntu users, Lee suggested.
'Consider displaying a dialog'
In any case, the EFF wants a few things from Ubuntu regarding this situation, Lee said. First, "include online search results" should be disabled by default, he said.
"Users should be able to install Ubuntu and immediately start using it without having to worry about leaking search queries or sending potentially private information to third party companies," Lee explained. "Since many users might find this feature useful, consider displaying a dialog the first time a user logs in that asks if they would like to opt-in."
Canonical should also provide a detailed explanation of what it does with search queries and IP addresses--including how long it stores them and when it gives them to third parties--as well as making it possible for users to toggle on and off specific online search results via the Search Results tab in Privacy settings, he added.
'Make sure Ubuntu remains an exception'
Already in the works at the EFF is a sequel to Lee's Monday post praising new Ubuntu privacy features "that we really like," Lee concluded.
Meanwhile, Windows and Mac users are already accustomed to having their data sent to third parties without their express consent, he noted; "let's make sure Ubuntu, like the GNU/Linux operating system at its heart, remains an exception to this."