Privacy search engines may seem something new for you, and if you are a privacy concerned then this article is meant for you! The people whose priority is privacy and hate to be monitored by any third party and not even by the search engines. Then Privacy search engines are all you need to get yourself an exceptional experience of searching with no fear of privacy breaching and spoofing.
What is Privacy Search Engines?
Privacy search engine as its name says it all! Yes, it is a search engine that is designed to provide the user with a search engine through which he can search without any fear of being tracked or spoofed. Privacy search engines do not keep the logs of your search history and immediately discards the user’s IP address. Whereas the traditional search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc., save all your browsing history and then make a search profile for you based on what you usually search.
Furthermore, (read our ultimate Privacy Guide to learn about online privacy threats and how you can enhance it). The search results for are also nothe t same for everyone else. This is because such search engines produce results by the search history of the user to make the search results more relevant for the user.
Why You Need Privacy Search Engines?
Well, it is something obvious that you need to have a privacy search engine if you hate being tracked by the popular search engines like Google, Yahoo, etc. that keep the records of your search history. However, Google has now added encryption to its search tools but that only stops the third-party to get the access to your search. Google itself can still track your search record and produce search results based on your regular searches.
However, Many people do not care about the fact that they are being tracked by the search engines they use but some people find it annoying and a threat to their online privacy. Thus, if you are such kind of person, then you need to think of getting a privacy search engine to enjoy the more private searching experience without fearing of being tracked (get the best anonymous VPN).
Top Privacy Search Engines
Here I come with a list of top privacy search engines that can help you choosing the best privacy search engine for you.
DuckDuckGo is the most famous privacy search engine around the world. What makes DuckDuckGo unique is, it does not track the search records of the user unlike Google, Yahoo and other popular search engines out there.
How it Works
DuckDuckGo works by compiling the results from about 50 sources like Yahoo, Wikipedia, Bing, Webcrawler, etc. It is the search engine whose sole purpose is to put the privacy of the user at first. DuckDuckGo never compromises on user’s privacy hence it is considered as the best privacy search engine. Unlike Google, Yahoo, Bing and others, DuckDuckGo doesn’t track and profile your search logs and gives you possible relevant results of your search as it outsources the results from more than 50 official websites. It works in collaboration with Yahoo but never compromises when it comes to the privacy of the users. It immediately discards the IP address and cookies of the user when it is done with the searching process.
Let us have a look on the appealing features of DuckDuckGo privacy search engines.
- Let’s kick off with its auto-completion feature that suggests appropriate words for your search as you start typing what you want to search. This helps you finding the proper words for your search and this way you will not have to write the complete sentence instead you could pick the phrase from auto-completion options.
- The result page of DuckDuckGo offers you to clarify your search by filtering it from Images, Videos, and News. You can also filter and sort results according to date and location.
Pros and Cons
- DuckDuckGo does not support any tracking or logs of your search history and does not save your IP and cookies to its server log.
- It has impressive graphics that makes it looks amazingly good.
- Unlike Google, it does not contain annoying ads.
- It offers filters like Images, Videos, News to help you clarify your search more.
- It is a US based search engine and has close ties with NSA that questions its reliability. However, DuckDuckGo continues its promise not to share any personal information with NSA, but doubts are still there. (also have a look on our best VPN for USA)
- It uses Amazon servers and compiles results of Yahoo.
- It knows nothing about you so it can not show you the different result based on your search preferences.
If you want fast browsing results with privacy and not as such ads, then DuckDuckGo is the right choice for you.
2. Startpage (and Ixquick)
How it Works
Startpage shows Google results but with full user’s privacy. It works as a middleman between Google and the user. Google only sees the search request by Startpage. Startpage does not allow Google to know about the user and it does not keep user’s log and has no tracking policy.
Startpage comes with many amazing features. One of its best features is that it shows you the result of world’s best search engine Google and gives you a complete sense of privacy. It offers you advanced filters that make your searching experience better and close to what you want. You can also set it as your homepage and add-on it in your Google Chrome browser.
Pros and Cons
- It has no tracking policy and do not keep logs
- It offers you proxy web pages.
- There are some non-targeted ads.
- It is based in Netherland and does not seem to have links with NSA. (also see VPNs for Netherland)
- It has US based servers, but you can choose other servers too.
If you want Google search results with no log keeping and complete privacy, then Startpage is made for the people like you.
SearX is also a privacy search engine but what makes it unique is that it is an open source search engine. Despite being less popular than DuckDuckGo and Startpage, it is the only meta search engine that assures you that none of your logs are kept, and your searching experience will be according to your choice.
How it Works
As SearX is a completely open source, it makes it easy for you to create and run your instance. Moreover, you can also use its official instances or some voluntarily running instances. The layout of its homepage is quite clean and shows clear results within a short time. SearX makes it possible for the hosts to personalize their instances regarding appearance. It primarily works by leveraging results from different search engines, but Preference option allows the hosts to choose which search engines they want the results from.
SearX comes with a kind of neat layout and customizer options for the hosts. It allows the hosts to choose search engines from which they want to see results. It also gives you many filtering options that help you improve your search and shows you better results.
Pros and Cons
- It also does not support tracking or logging policy.
- Entirely ads-free search engine.
- Allows you to self-host and customizes instances based on your preferences.
- It can proxy web pages.
- The instances hosted by the public can be logged or tracked.
If you are a person who likes to design its search engine, then SearX will best suit you.
4. Disconnect Search
How it Works
Disconnect Search comes as a toolbar that can be downloaded in any web browser like Chrome, Firefox, etc. You can also get to use its web version. The feature that makes it unusual is it allows you to search anonymously and with complete privacy.
Disconnect Search shows the results from Yahoo, Bing or DuckDuckGo. It does not support Google as of now, but you can have results of other famous search engines with foolproof privacy.
You can add-on its extension in Chrome, and it will not take much of your device memory. This is a good solution for all your privacy concerns with no ads and directs many web pages and search engines.
It is total privacy friendly that does not log and allows you to search anonymously.
Pros and Cons
- No log policy and free from tracking.
- Allows you to search anonymously.
- Free from ads.
- No links with NSA
- Does not support Google results.
If you are not a Google freak and want to search anonymously, then Disconnect Search is good privacy solution for you.
Conclusion – Privacy Search Engines
We have brought all the top privacy search engines and explained their pros and cons. So now the ball is in your coat. You have to decide which one to choose according to your preferences.