December 26, 2012
EDIT by Ashraf: Read dotTech's guide on this: http://dottech.org/143583/how-to-stop-google-users-from-emailing-you-without-knowing-your-email-address-guide/
There's a discussion on Slashdot today — http://tech.slashdot.org/story/14/01/13/1438229/bennett-haselton-google-to-gmail-controversy-missing-the-point?utm_source=rss1.0mainlinkanon&utm_medium=feed —
about how signing up for a gmail account automatically gives you a Google+ account as well, whether you want one or not, and your gmail address is searchable from Google+, with resulting privacy implications.
Here's a tip from message #45940557 on how to disable name searches from Google+.
1.Click on your icon (top right on my browser) to go to Account settings.
2. Click on Google + Settings
3. Under Profile (more than half way down), uncheck "Help others discover my profile in search results."
4. Cross-fingers, because who knows what other options will be added
The point is that this setting is hidden under Google+ settings rather than gmail settings, when it's gmail that's affected.
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