I have just discovered to my horror that unsaved documents from Textedit and Pages are being stored on Apple's iCloud servers.

This is absolutely not ok and I need to turn it off, how can I do this?

  • 2
    What exactly did you observe that makes you think this? What Mac/iPad/phone model are you using, and what OS version?
    – benwiggy
    Sep 28 at 9:54
  • I observed the files in the iCloud drive folders for Textedit and Pages.
    – Appalling
    Sep 28 at 9:56
  • 1
    The first search result I got points to a Macworld article about this which refers to mjtsai.com/blog/2014/10/26/…. Did you try the solution described there?
    – nohillside
    Sep 28 at 10:18
  • 1
    Storing draft documents in iCloud has nothing to do with key logging. If somebody (be it Apple, be it another party) wanted to capture all your keystrokes, there would be simpler (and less easy to detect) ways to do so.
    – nohillside
    Sep 28 at 10:37
  • 1
    Even if this were true (and I don't think we've ascertained that it is), millions of people store private documents in iCloud, which has end-to-end encryption, which not even Apple can access. See this document for details. support.apple.com/en-us/HT202303
    – benwiggy
    Sep 28 at 12:43

1 Answer 1


As you may know, apps like TextEdit and Pages save every document to disk, automatically, as soon as it is created.

However, iCloud is many things. There is "Desktop and Documents", in which those folders are automatically synced to iCloud.

There are also individual 'container' folders for apps on iCloud - required for iOS/iPadOS apps.

The only issue is that Apple's apps save documents to their iCloud folders by default. (If you actually do Command S to choose a location, you will see that iCloud comes up first.)

It may be the case that this default is causing the auto-save files to save to the cloud as well.

This is easily remedied, simply by disabling iCloud as the default location for these apps:

defaults write NSGlobalDomain NSDocumentSaveNewDocumentsToCloud -bool false

You could also disable each app's iCloud folder in System Settings, though it may have uses. This would still retain the general functionality of iCloud Drive.

Note that you can turn on end-to-end encryption for iCloud Drive so that only you can access your documents. Apple would not have the keys. iCloud data security overview

It would make the front pages if it were discovered that Apple (or any government) could access your data.

  • 2
    iCloud Drive does not use end-to-end encryption by default, the user must manually turn it on. In default settings, Apple could access a users iCloud files.
    – Ezekiel
    Sep 28 at 14:23
  • Clearly I mean unsaved by the user, how do you not understand that? Thanks for your answer which I will accept if you remove the condescending tone from it. I have been blocked from asking questions on this site now, why? My question is perfectly legitimate and should be of great importance to others. Sorry it embarrasses Apple!
    – Appalling
    Oct 9 at 9:27
  • @Appalling You have to remember that I don't know what you know (or indeed anyone else who comes here, looking for answers to a similar problem). It's therefore important to be accurate and specific about terms. No disrespect was intended.
    – benwiggy
    Oct 9 at 15:08
  • You and others in this question have been trying to belittle my very serious concerns, I have worked professionally in IT for over 20 years. Now I am banned from asking questions on this site because one of you has reported my alleged "bad questions". It is childlike fanboy behaviour plain and simple.
    – Appalling
    Oct 9 at 21:16

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