DuckDuckGo the Search Engine to Use for Privacy

Posted by on July 11, 2013 at 10:30 pm.

This is one of the best ideas I have ever seen on the Internet. And it was the recent discovery that NSA either can or does know everything about you (so to speak) based on our digital life. The NSA scandal has ended up providing a surge of web surfers heading over to DuckDuckGo (DDG) to use their search services in place of Google, Bing and Yahoo!.

Founder, Gabriel Weinberg, began seeing traffic and usage of DDG building quickly soon after the government’s use of the Prism program was revealed. Enjoying 1.7 million searches a day,  after the Guardian report hit the news the searches increased to 3 million searches per day within two weeks.


Weinberg has taken a different approach to online privacy – one I have not seen anywhere else on the Internet: zero tracking. Zero. No tracking whatsoever. No cookies are set; no data related to the users’ IP address is stored; there are no user logins required anywhere; and the connection is encrypted by default. In other words, NSA has nothing to request/require from DDG because there is nothing to turn over about any user of their search service.

DuckDuckGo web searches

You can read the complete article The Guardian has posted on this entitled:  NSA scandal delivers record numbers of internet users to DuckDuckGo. But first, look at this graphic that shows how much privacy is on everyone’s mind.

Interestingly, prior to the NSA revelation, few people really knew about DDG – I didn’t. Fewer than 4 in 100 knew that this was a search site, let alone a safe, secure and private search site. Within days, the traffic had increased more than 50% because this is the only search site that offers zero tracking. I know I’m being redundant, but what an amazing online business model.

And – this is a good search engine. I have tried all my main keywords for my many sites and I am coming up as expected.

What does this mean for your web searches?

Instead of getting junk ads based on where you have searched before, your searches result in pure information, based on the search term, not where you are and what you have searched before. For me as an SEO specialist, Online Reputation Management expert and Web Designer, it is everything I have needed in order to do pure analysis related to my client’s needs. Because Google looks at your IP address and locale, my searches tend to come back focused on my city and not my client’s reputation or search engine results page position for their keywords.

Not only that, but every time you search for anything, your browser remembers where you were and serves up ads on sponsored sites related to your past searches. The reported for The Guardian DuckDuckGo article has some great examples and it is well worth the read.

And don’t forget the main reason the traffic has jumped on DuckDuckGo: the desire for privacy. How sweet it is.

DuckDuckGo is my new search engine of choice. Join me? Thank you Mr. Weinberg.




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