"Scrivener" would like to access your contacts

Just updated to Mountain Lion and on opening Scrivener, got a message saying ‘“Scrivener” would like to access your contacts’. What the…? Why does Scrivener want my contacts?

To fill in your info on the title page when you create a new project.

That’s the one. Mountain Lion just asks for the user’s permission.

Really? Funny place to get it, the Contacts!

That’s because when you set up your Mac after buying it, it asks you for your registration info. It sends that information to Apple, but it also sets up a special card in Address Book that is associated with you. This card can be accessed from Address Book with the Go/Go to My Card menu command. That’s how you would update your address or any other information. This is a standard thing, and many applications will look for “your card” to pre-fill information. Thus, you might be seeing a lot of this warning in the future, depending upon the types of software you use.

It’s good to ask though, like this, if you don’t know what it does, because that is a security hole. In the past any program could access your contacts freely, and that makes it easy to write viruses that propagate themselves to other machines using e-mail addresses. Now, if a program tries to access them, you get a warning. So if something weird asks for permission, do enquire before clicking okay.

Yes, Scrivener is just taking your address from your Address Book - but on Mountain Lion, Address Book.app has been renamed Contacts.app. On Mountain Lion, any app that contains functionality to access the Address Book will have this message come up: “Such-sand-such wants to use your contacts.” It’s OS X that pops up that message, not Scrivener. You’ll see it pop up in many apps on Mountain Lion, including in Pages, which also uses Contacts, née Address Book, to populate title pages. You can deny access to Scrivener with no problem - Scrivener will just use dummy information in your title pages which you’ll have to edit yourself.