DuckDuckGo stands in the way of web trackers and your personal data.
The Google Search alternative operates as follows.
DuckDuckGo wants to make your online privacy a priority.
Most of us have been subjected to the intrusive side of online tracking.
You know, when you’re looking for a pair of shoes and adverts for those identical shoes follow you throughout the internet.
You might want a little privacy in your online experience from time to time.
Enter DuckDuckGo, a search engine that promises to keep your online searches private and anonymous.
Other private browsers, such as Brave, block trackers and third-party cookies from monitoring your web browsing activities.
However, DuckDuckGo, which has increased its advertising spending, views itself as a direct competitor to Google Search, with a mobile app and browser plugins for Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and other browsers.
People have become more aware of how much personal information is available to internet businesses and advertising as a result of significant instances like the Cambridge Analytica scandal, and they are opting out of being tracked when they can, as Apple’s iOS 14.5 allows you to do.
Despite the fact that it doesn’t track users, DuckDuckGo’s software has been downloaded more than 50 million times in the last year alone — more than in the previous 13 years combined.
Here’s all you need to know about it and how it protects your searches.
What is DuckDuckGo?
It is a search engine founded in 2008 by Gabriel Weinberg.
This search engine is committed to protecting its customers’ online privacy.
It is a search engine that includes a mobile browser app and a desktop plugin, both of which are designed to protect your personal information while you explore the internet.
It promises to make your searches private and anonymous, as well as providing built-in tracker blocking, making it more difficult for websites to collect information about you.
The following are some of their search features:
- Local business answers.
- Products and shopping.
- Wikipedia references.
- Currency conversions.
- Flight information.
- Sport scores.
- Question and answer references.
- Shortcut commands that lead you directly to other websites from the search engine are included in DuckDuckGo’s extra features.
- Localization by language and area.
- Themes that can be customized, including a dark theme.
It also offers apps and browser extensions for a variety of platforms and browsers.
As a result, you can continue to use Chrome, Safari, or any other browser without being monitored.
DuckDuckGo User Statistics
It is the United States’ second most popular mobile search engine.
In the first quarter of 2022, DuckDuckGo users conducted over 8 billion searches.
It owns 0.68 percent of the global search engine market.
DuckDuckGo, on the other hand, has 2.51% of the search engine market share in the United States.
Over six million people have downloaded the DuckDuckGo Chrome add on.
DuckDuckGo advertising is ten times less expensive than Google advertising. It has raised a total of $13 million. A total of 172 individuals work for DuckDuckGo.
It does not track searches done through its browser extension or mobile app, for starters.
Other browsers, such as Chrome, offer private or incognito windows that do not trace your search history, but their default windows do.
(Every “embarrassing search history” joke is based on this.)
It never tracks your search history, instead forcing you to switch to a different version of the software.
DuckDuckGo searches also connect you to encrypted versions of websites whenever possible, making it more difficult for others to see what you’re looking at online.
Other search engines may offer both encrypted and unencrypted options in this case, but the default isn’t necessarily the privacy-friendly option.
It eliminates the need to navigate to encrypted connections manually.
When researchers identified several Microsoft tracking routines while using it’s browsers in May, they chastised the company.
Because DuckDuckGo uses Microsoft’s Bing to power its search results, the presence of Microsoft trackers appears to fly in the face of the search engine’s privacy promise. DuckDuckGo’s founder and CEO clarified on Reddit that the company is “currently contractually restricted by Microsoft” from stopping Microsoft scripts from fully loading.
DuckDuckGo, on the other hand, continues to outperform other popular privacy solutions when it comes to blocking tracking data, and the business has updated its app store descriptions to better illustrate privacy protection restrictions.
It had previously announced its Microsoft partnership, and its CEO stated in a Reddit post that the business is attempting to have the ban lifted.
External trackers are also aggressively blocked by DuckDuckGo when you’re online.
Check out DuckDuckGo’s blog for a more complete description of its privacy features.
It is a search engine that prioritizes privacy.
What distinguishes DuckDuckGo from Google Search? What about private Browsing and Incognito mode?
In contrast to other big internet companies like Google and Facebook, which have typically made money by targeting ads based on your browsing history and personal data, it takes the opposite strategy.
While Google has stated that it will no longer do so, the platform still collects a lot of information about you, including your location and search history — even while you’re using incognito mode.
It is unique in that it does not save any of your browsing data and prevents trackers while you browse.
The DuckDuckGo Privacy Browser will walk you through the numerous ways it protects your privacy when you first use it.
When you visit a website, network routers record your IP address so that the website knows where to transmit the information.
In most cases, a website saves your IP address as well as the information you provide.
When using its search engine, however, your IP address will be hidden.
When you click on a search result, the information request is redirected to prevent your search terms from being sent to the site.
In essence, the sites are aware that you have visited them, but they are unaware of where you came from or what keywords you used.
Google, Yahoo, and Bing also track your search history and personal data to give a more personalized search experience (even in incognito mode).
This method aids the delivery of targeted adverts and personalized search results by these search engines.
In contrast to other search engines, DuckDuckGo takes the opposite strategy.
DuckDuckGo pledges not to gather that information, allowing you to avoid the “filter bubble.”
The search results on DuckDuckGo are not personalized based on user preferences, search history, or geography.
No Stored Search History
Consider all of the things you look for on the internet: medical information, financial solutions, location-based queries, and so on.
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Some of these lookups can be quite personal.
Other big search engines sell the data to marketers in order to give you targeted adverts.
It guarantees that your search history will never be saved.
You can expect a new search result every time you use DuckDuckGo’s browser.
So, how do they eke out a living? Of course, we’ll continue to serve you advertising.
DuckDuckGo, on the other hand, targeted the terms you search for rather than being based on you.
As a result, if you search for pens, it will return adverts for pens.
If you then search for stationery, you’ll see advertisements for stationery.
There are no third-party trackers.
Did you know that Google records visitors to 86% of the top 50,000 websites on the internet?
Because many websites utilize Google Analytics to measure visitors, this is the case.
Google also owns Adsense, Admob, and DoubleClick, three of the most popular non-search ad networks used by most websites.
As a result, it’s difficult to avoid Google.
Yahoo and Bing also track your online activity in order to create profiles on you.
Another tech behemoth that tracks people behind the scenes is Facebook.
However, just 36% of the major websites are covered by them.
Other search engines, Facebook, and other trackers are said to be blocked by its browser and mobile app.
So, if you want to remain anonymous when you leave the search engines, DuckDuckGo might be the way to go.
Have you ever come across the term “filter bubble”?
When consumers come upon information that confirms their own opinions, they experience the filter bubble.
Given that Google, Bing, and Yahoo are recognized for giving tailored search results, this is likely to occur frequently.
What does this signify for people who are looking for something?
The big search engines remember your political leanings or other ideas and filter out stuff they believe you’ll ignore.
As a result, you’re more likely to get findings that you already agree with.
On the other hand, it believes that search results should be objective.
As a result, regardless of political leaning, cultural bias, or other demographics, everyone gets the same results on their search results page.
What Crawler Does DuckDuckGo Use?
DuckDuckGo gets its information from over 400 different sources, including sources such as:
- Apple Maps.
- Wolfram Alpha.
They also construct their equivalent of a snippet using DuckDuckBot, their web crawler, and other crowd-sourced sites like Wikipedia.
They do, however, specifically state that they do not use any Google sources.
This is reassuring for those who prefer to keep their online activities private.
DuckDuckGo’s Advantages and Disadvantages
Despite the fact that Google remains the big man on top, DuckDuckGo’s user base is gradually growing.
It’s impossible to get an accurate figure because they don’t track users.
However, as of November 2020, DuckDuckGo said that 80 million individuals had utilized their search engine.
While it may appear to be the ideal option for individuals concerned about their privacy, it does have certain advantages and disadvantages.
- When searching, you have complete privacy.
- Uses shortcuts to get you to a website quickly.
- There are no targeted advertising and the interface is clean.
- Search results that aren’t skewed.
- Search results on a single page.
- You will not be subjected to social engineering as a result of your searches.
- There aren’t as many search engine advantages as Google, Yahoo, or Bing, and the search algorithm isn’t as sophisticated.
- Search results are limited.
- No anti-malware or anti-virus protection.
- Ranking variables that aren’t up to par.
- The mapping and imaging results aren’t as good as they could be.
It is a suitable alternative if you value your online privacy and don’t mind spending a few more minutes searching.
If you like the bells and whistles of other big search engines, keep in mind that they come at a price.
How can I use DuckDuckGo?
Simply search for “DuckDuckGo” in your app store on your mobile device.
You can download the DuckDuckGo Privacy Browser and use it in the same way as you would Chrome or Safari.
You’ll see a fire icon in the bottom center of your app, which you can tap at any time to dismiss all your tabs and wipe all your personal data.
Go to duckduckgo.com on your desktop to find a button to add DuckDuckGo to your browser.
You’ll be led to the Chrome webstore page to download the extension for free if you’re using Chrome.
On Safari, you’ll be shown how to make it your default search engine and how to manually trigger a DuckDuckGo search.
Is DuckDuckGo a VPN?
DuckDuckGo isn’t a VPN; it just doesn’t follow you the way Google does (remember, even in Incognito Mode, your search history isn’t completely private).
If you want to browse the internet safely, use DuckDuckGo in conjunction with a VPN, which will encrypt your traffic and hide your IP address.
It all starts with a mouse click.
Is DuckDuckGo Secure and Private to Use?
It is relatively safe and provides significantly more privacy than other browsers.
To begin with, DuckDuckGo’s key selling point is your search privacy.
It does not gather user data or trace your search history as a result of this.
Unlike Google, it does not link your online searches to your IP address.
You won’t be bombarded with tailored adverts as a result.
It also doesn’t save your search history, so each time you use the engine, you’re starting from nothing.
The lack of an auto-suggest function is, of course, a disadvantage, but it’s a little price to pay for more private browsing.
You can share your personal information with the DuckDuckGo search engine if you want to, but only if you want to.
Can you get a virus from DuckDuckGo?
It is a pretty secure search engine that you may use without risking your privacy. DuckDuckGo, like any other browser, is vulnerable to viruses, malware, and other online hazards. Whether or not you become infected is mostly determined by your common sense and what you do online.
It all starts with a mouse click.
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How Does DuckDuckGo Make Money if it isn’t Targeting ads?
It still makes money from advertisements, but they aren’t targeted.
The search engine displays advertisements based on the keywords you enter, which are unrelated to your personal information such as your browsing or purchase history.
In other words, you’ll only see ads for whatever you’re looking for right now, not for that strange thing your friend sent you a link to last week and you can’t seem to get away from.
It must, of course, monetize its operations in some way, so it continues to use adverts based on the phrases you enter in. The adverts on DuckDuckGo’s search page may reflect your search for “cat food.”
When you browse to a new website, though, the service will forget that you looked for cat food.
When a user buys a product after searching on DuckDuckGo or through their advertising content, it employs affiliate codes and makes commissions.
Microsoft Trackers Controversy
A recent blemish in DuckDuckGo’s privacy record is worth mentioning.
DuckDuckGo isn’t preventing trackers from several Microsoft-owned platforms, including Bing and LinkedIn, according to reports from 2022.
This appears to be part of a pact between DuckDuckGo and Microsoft to make ad distribution easier.
DuckDuckGo has assured customers that these trackers do not allow Microsoft to monitor individual users or link search behavior to specific individuals, according to a statement.
However, the lack of transparency surrounding this scenario is troubling, because it demonstrates DuckDuckGo’s close ties to huge tech businesses and advertising.
Is DuckDuckGo a Better Search Engine Than Google?
Everything in the DuckDuckGo vs. Google debate boils down to your priorities.
You’ll miss out on some of Google Search’s conveniences, but you’ll have a safer, more private experience.
It is preferable if you value your privacy.
Of course, it’s difficult to escape Google, and most of your accounts are probably already linked to this behemoth.
DuckDuckGo, on the other hand, provides a wonderful way to reduce its use, and it’s nice to support a site that provides a more transparent search experience.
Nobody knows how many people actually use it because it doesn’t track its users.
When you search for something on the internet, you receive the same results as everyone else. Google, on the other hand, profiles people and tailors search results to their preferences. Not to mention the dozens of unrelated advertisements that will appear following each search query.
Why do you Need a VPN too?
Avoiding Online Threats.
While DuckDuckGo provides search engine privacy, it can not protect you from other online hazards. Individual websites or social media platforms can still follow you and acquire your information, and cybercriminals can use social engineering tactics to target you.
Keeping Your Internet Traffic Safe.
Furthermore, your transmission on DuckDuckGo remains unencrypted, allowing others to intercept it, see your IP, spy on your activity, and steal your personal information.
Your internet service provider (ISP) can still see what you’re doing and share it with third parties, regardless of which default search engine you’re using. Even worse, if you’re connected to an insecure Wi-Fi network, a cybercriminal could monitor your activity from afar and steal your personal information.
Increasing Your Safety.
We strongly suggest that you utilize a reliable VPN service. All of your online traffic is encrypted when it leaves your device when you use NordVPN. Your IP address will be hidden as well, so no one will be able to track you down. When you use it in conjunction with NordVPN, you get a truly secure and private surfing experience. The Threat Protection feature of NordVPN will also assist you in identifying malware-infected files, preventing you from visiting hazardous websites, and blocking trackers and annoying adverts on the fly.
Alternatives to DuckDuckGo
While it has a higher level of anonymity than Google, it is not the best search engine for everyone.
There are other possibilities for consumers who are looking for privacy-focused search engines, just as there are alternatives to Google, such as Bing and Yahoo.
Here’s a rundown of the top alternatives.
Swisscows is a great option if you want to be completely anonymous when browsing.
Hulbee AG, a business based in Switzerland, designed this lesser-known browser.
IP addresses and other personal information are not tracked by the browser.
Swisscows does keep track of some information, such as the number of daily searches, in order to better understand data traffic.
You can use the browser to look for websites, photos, movies, and music.
It also has a translation feature, albeit it isn’t as good as Google Translate or other internet translation services.
Startpage claims to be the most private search engine in the world.
It preserves the privacy of its users by not storing personal data or sharing it with third parties.
Startpage is a search engine firm based in the Netherlands that has been in operation since 1998.
It offers a nice proxy option that protects personal data like your IP address.
One of the most significant features of Startpage is that it includes Google Search results in its results.
As a result, Startpage combines the privacy of private search with the familiarity of Google results.
Qwant is a French search engine that does not track your queries or retain your personal information for the purpose of advertising.
A feature similar to DuckDuckGo’s!bangs is available in this search engine.
This function, known as Qwick Search, gives you with shortcuts for searching for specific pages on websites.
On Qwant, there are various other handy filter options to help you quickly discover the proper results.
What are some of the disadvantages of utilizing DuckDuckGo?
DuckDuckGo does not save your previous search results and history if you rely on them for any reason, such as customisation.
Using DuckDuckGo to achieve DuckDuckGo’s level of anonymity does take away some of the convenience of having your search history available at all times.
Does DuckDuckGo offer a standalone desktop web browser?
DuckDuckGo does not yet have a standalone desktop browser as of this writing. Only a mobile browser is available. DuckDuckGo, on the other hand, revealed in late 2021 that a standalone browser for desktops would be released soon. It promises a more streamlined browser interface with extensive privacy controls. According to reports, it will also contain the Fire button found in the DuckDuckGo mobile browser.
Is DuckDuckGo available for download?
DuckDuckGo is a search engine that offers additional protection to its users. It cannot be installed as a browser. Set the DuckDuckGo website as your browser’s startup page, and every time you open your browser, it will launch DuckDuckGo immediately away.
Is it possible to use DuckDuckGo on my phone?
Both Apple and Android cellphones can use the DuckDuckGo browser. Simply search for DuckDuckGo in the App Store or Google Play Store and install it.
After you’ve installed it, you’ll be able to use the browser to search and view websites on your phone. The browser window displays which third-party trackers have been disabled.
With DuckDuckGo, which browser should I use?
You can use any browser to access DuckDuckGo, but we recommend using a privacy-focused browser like Tor, Firefox, or Brave.
DuckDuckGo’s browser for macOS, which is currently in testing, is also an option.
Edge, Chrome, Opera, and Safari are among browsers to avoid if you want to keep your personal information secret.
As you use these browsers, they follow your search history and collect your personal information.
Is Google the owner of DuckDuckGo?
DuckDuckGo is available as a web page, a browser extension, or a mobile app for searching.
The option to make DuckDuckGo your default search engine is available in most major browsers.
DuckDuckGo is a search engine that is not owned by Google, Bing, or any other search engine.
Can DuckDuckGo be trusted?
You have a blank search history on DuckDuckGo every time you search, as if you’ve never been there before.
We simply don’t keep any information that can be used to link searches to you.
DuckDuckGo provides a truly private surfing experience, allowing you to search the web without being tracked.
While we recommend that you set DuckDuckGo as your preferred search engine, it is insufficient on its own.
You should also use privacy-protecting browsers and a VPN to encrypt your data and disguise your IP address.
A VPN protects your personal information and privacy, providing protection that is beyond the reach of any search engine.
Even if you prefer Google over DuckDuckGo, a VPN can let you browse the internet more privately. We highly recommend Surfshark if you’d want to try one of the most reliable VPN providers. There are several reliable free VPNs available, but they lack the features and functionality of a paid VPN.