*UPDATE* The Lindens fixed this already, looks like. I tested it by making one of my groups hidden, checking for it, and not finding it. It's also no longer showing the hidden Linden group The Lindens which used to be on Philip Linden's web profile. BTW, The Lindens didn't used to be a hidden group, but it is now.
I'm finding that people are really not getting this very simple and very obvious problem with hidden group privacy now exploited in Second Life. I've explained it in a longer piece here.
Let's go over it in a short and simple post again:
1. If a group has been created as HIDDEN, i.e. closed, not visible to search, not visible AS A GROUP, i.e. if the GROUP ITSELF is on hidden status, IT IS NOW EXPOSED.
Technical: on the first page of the group menu, the owner/officers have the option of checking off the box at mid-page under GROUP PREFERENCES as "SHOW IN SEARCH" or not. If that box is NOT checked that means you have made a hidden group and it is NOW SHOWING, i.e. *not working as intended*.
That means private groups of all sorts are now outed. That means groups Lindens made to keep from the public eye; that means safe houses people have created as invisible except for members to protect them from stalkers or griefing or just merely to have privacy; that means sex groups; that means various privileged FIC groups; that means your group if it has HIDDEN GROUP status!
2. That's not to be confused with YOU hiding YOUR OWN groups regardless of their status determined by their owners as open or closed. So if you are a member of the open group Ravenglass Rentals, and you decide you don't want your stalking ex to see that group, you hide it -- you have that option. This current website exploit/gap does not show that -- anything YOU have hidden *yourself* IS STILL HIDDEN (go check it). Your problem is with group owners of groups that themselves as groups were hidden.
Technical: on the GENERAL page of preferences you can check off "Hide my group titles" and also on the first page of the group menu on the lower right hand side you can check off "List group in my profile" -- or NOT. That is SEPARATE from the owner's decision to "List in search".
So what are the remedies here?
1. People who run hidden groups which they as owners/managers have put in hidden status must decide whether to warn their members who are now exposed as members of hidden groups -- and the very group's existence is now also exposed.
2. Members of hidden groups should leave them, so that they don't have their profile showing that they are members of a secret/hidden group.
I could also point out that you could do nothing.
Not everyone is going to bother to look.
To see your hidden group, somebody would have to bother to look you up, and they may not do that. Of course, Google has indexed these pages with this information showing and now it's in Google.