Distinguishing between cause-effect and simple events occurring together.

I still see most blogs and professionals believing that the increase of not-provided queries is a consequence of Google enabling HTTPS for more of their users. That's not the cause.

Queries do not reach the destination website simply because Google doesn't write them in the URL of the redirecting page or because Google asks the browser to use just the URL "http://www.google.tld/" as a referrer.

HTTPS transactions are unrelated to the removal of query data and the proof is that in some cases you can actually do a search using the encrypted version of Google and preserving the query data so that it arrives to the destination website.

When Google decides to remove the query data from the referral of more users, they do that and at the same time they switch on the HTTPS protocol. As a consequence, people believe that the first event is caused by the second one.

More: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Causality
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