It’s pretty much agreed that Google’s Secure Socket Layer (SSL) encryption is a good thing. Why not get a little free protection given that our search queries are often a good way of piecing together exactly what’s going on in our lives?
But if there’s one thing all the leaked NSA revelations and international espionage discussions have shown, it’s that knowing how to take control of your privacy is a good and necessary thing. And in some situations or for some people that might mean wanting less privacy.
Who knows, maybe you’re a marketing company trying to throw another firm off the scent of the latest trend. Maybe you’re trying to prove a point. Or maybe you don’t like Google’s encryption but have to use the search engine for certain things. It doesn’t matter. People should know their options, and there’s a way to Google search without sending your query through SSL encryption. Use the URL www.google.com/?nord=1 and you won’t be redirected to https://www.google.com/.
People discussing getting around SSL in forums have noticed additional ways of avoiding it, too. Though there’s really no reason for most people to avoid SSL, understanding privacy as a broader topic requires more than just the ability to lock everything down. It means knowing which subsets of your data are accessible and to whom, and then making decisions about what you do and don’t want out there. [Search Engine Land]