DuckDuckGo: The Online Privacy You DeserveSupport
As technology proliferates, your personal information is exposed. Stray away from the hacking of accounts, cyberstalking, personal data profiles, location tracking, personalized marketing, and data breaches with a couple of clicks. Don’t take your chances. Secure your second online life. Take back your privacy by installing DuckDuckGo.
Here is a Summary of What You Will Find on this Page:
- Summary of What DuckDuckGo Is
- Issues With Being Tracked
- DuckDuckGo Vs. Google Incognito Mode
- What Google Knows About Us
- How Google Tracks Us
- Why, When, and Who Created DuckDuckGo
- DuckDuckGo Statistics and Reviews
- How DuckDuckGo Protects Data
- How to Install DuckDuckGo
- Comparison of DuckDuckGo’s Download Formats
What is DuckDuckGo?
DuckDuckGo is a multi-billion dollar web security organization that provides a private way to search the web. The program empowers users to avoid tracking by establishing absolute user anonymity; this means that DuckDuckGo has no way to differentiate your query from anyone else’s. With user anonymity, there is no personal file to personalize your advertisements, narrow your search results, and share or sell your personal information. The organization has donated $3,650,000 to other organizations with the same values.
Why Does Being Tracked Online Matter?
Just like you may not want your workmates to know about your tuna sandwich addiction, you may not want your family members, key interests, travel plans, or political beliefs to be examined by giant companies like Google and Facebook. Unfortunately, not only can your information in many search engines be legally searched by lawyers and sold to companies, but it can also be used to display advertisements and alter search results.
Even in civil court cases like divorce, Google welcomes lawyers to read through the data lured from you over the years by AI and trackers (and use it against you). According to donttrack.us, which is one of DuckDuckGo’s original campaigns, Google answered over 100,000 requests for accessing personal data collections in one year.
You may have heard about the Facebook–Cambridge Analytica Data Scandal. This was an incident where nearly 90 million Facebook users’ sensitive information was bought without their consent and used to run political campaigns. In the end, Facebook was caught and fined 5 billion dollars, but the data could not be unleaked.
Because your search engine thinks it knows you, you may not be receiving the holistic search results that you would expect and are looking for. Your Google search results are filtered before they are shown to you. A “Filter bubble” is the technical name for this. No matter how many different sources you check, with a filter bubble, you may still be receiving only one side of an argument—and you’ll never know! Filter bubbles can alter your opinions and values.
Personalized advertisements are made to distract you. Whether you are reading an article or playing an online video game, luscious McDonald’s burgers, overpriced bed mattresses, and sizzling Coca-Cola bottles follow you around on the sides of the screen. If the flashing pop-ups could not have been more distracting, websites now use your personal information to find ads concerning topics you are already interested in. Removing these ads will make your productivity and concentration improve, as well as your bank account balance.
Does Incognito Mode on Google Chrome Provide the Same Privacy as DuckDuckGo?
Do not let the name deceive you; Google Chrome’s “Incognito Mode” is not incognito at all. Using Incognito Mode creates the illusion of anonymity by not displaying search history information on the users’ end of the screen. On the other side of the screen, the user’s location continues to be tracked, clicks continue to be monitored, and visited websites continue to be documented to create a personal profile with all your information. Google knows more about you than you think.
What Exactly Does Google Know About Us?
Right off the bat, Google collects your full name, age, phone number, and gender when you create your account. But that is only the beginning. Google also has a good understanding of what you look like: your hair type, clothing size, style, and preferred brands. They also have insight into parts of your personality like your favorite sports to play and watch, music and book preferences, favorite places, favorite foods (and when you will run out of them), travel plans, family members, house address, route to work/school, religion, and political stance. In addition, if you have ever used Voice Assistant, Google has saved the recording and now knows what you sound like.
How Does Google Gather Information About Us?
A lot of the personal information Google has about you has come from stalking your location—and there are multiple sources through which Google tracks whereabouts. According to NordVPN, the most transparent trackers are Google Maps and Maze. Other trackers include “Web and App Activity” in your settings, which informs Google when and where you opened a Google-owned app and AI’s reckoning of your camera roll. The personalized albums that pop up on your phone called “people” and “places” have been made by these same image-analyzing AI. In addition, Google can also identify flight confirmations in your Gmail and foresee when you will be out of town.
Google Calendar, Gmail, and Google Hangouts inform Google of your friends and family (and your relationships with them). Subsequently, the data gathered from people you interact with gives Google insight into your interests—and vice versa. Shared calendar events are the most obvious example.
Google also logs your YouTube watch history (https://www.youtube.com/feed/history) and YouTube search history (https://www.youtube.com/feed/history/search_history). Interestingly enough, Google does not hide these lists from users; the question arises, what forms of tracking is Google hiding?
Why, When, and Who Created DuckDuckGo?
In February of 2008, entrepreneur Gabriel Weinberg released DuckDuckGo. Weinberg was born on January 1, 1979, in California. He got his bachelor’s degree with honors in physics and master’s degree in technology and policy program, both from MIT.
DuckDuckGo became popular fairly quickly after its release; by the end of 2008, the invention had reached Reddit’s headlines and had grown more popular since. Although it is hard to know exactly how many users DuckDuckGo has because it does not differentiate devices, the company approximates that it had 80 million users in 2020.
The headquarters of the company is in Pennsylvania, and researchers say it had 124 employees as of 2021. The employees work remotely from 15 different countries.
DuckDuckGo Statistics and Reveiws:
DuckDuckGo has recently turned 14 years old. Over the years, there have been over 71.9 billion searches on DuckDuckGo, with nearly 100 million searches entered daily, says https://backlinko.com/duckduckgo-stats. According to statcounter.com, DuckDuckGo also holds a 2.52% share of the U.S. search engine market; fourth most popular after Google, Bing, and Yahoo, respectively (as of July 2022). The website’s graphs also show that DuckDuckGo is the third most popular on mobile devices, tablets, and consoles specifically. The mobile app averages a 4.9/5 star rating on the Apple App Store (1.3 million total ratings) and the app has been downloaded over 10 million times on the Google Play Store. You can view the company’s snowballing growth in the graph below.
How Exactly Does DuckDuckGo Keep Your Information Private?
DuckDuckGo redirects trackers on sites and mail, does not look at IP address information, blocks cookies, keeps no search or view history, keeps no track of device location, and does not ask users to create user profiles. Some of the specific features include “Safe Search,” which allows users to change the country they search from; “Privacy Grade,” which notifies users when a website is tracking them; and the “Fire Button,” which lets users delete all their tabs and browsing data at once.
How to Instal DuckDuckGo:
DuckDuckGo is available in three formats: search engine, browser extension, and mobile app, which you can download below.
Search engine: DuckDuckGo — Privacy, simplified.
- Apple AppStore: https://apps.apple.com/app/duckduckgo-privacy-browser/id663592361
- GooglePlay: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.duckduckgo.mobile.android
Which Version of DuckDuckGo Should You Download?
With a good understanding of what each platform does, you can figure out which version works best for you. The most popular DuckDuckGo platform, the search engine, is a particular type of website that helps users interactively discover other websites. Meanwhile, a browser extension may extend the functionality of an already existing search engine and the websites viewed on it. Grammarly is a well-known example of a browser extension (although it is also available as an online editing site). Finally, a mobile app is pretty similar in service to a search engine, except it is used on a mobile device like a phone.
Article by Sophia Tatar