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The search engine DuckDuckGo was launched in September 2008, touting itself as a search engine that prioritises the searcher’s privacy, avoiding the ‘filter bubble’ of personalised search results.
As a rule of thumb, it does not profile its users, resulting in all users seeing the same search results for any given search term.
Another way in which it differs from Google and other mainstream search engines, is that it emphasises collecting information from the best sources, rather than the most sources.
Last week the search engine announced that it served more than one billion searches in 2013. These numbers are directly linked to current events, detailed here by DuckDuckGo.
During the period in which Edward Snowden’s leaks about US government surveillance were revealed, the traffic on DuckDuckGo grew from under two million searches in June to over four million in November.
It’s clear that the search engine is enjoying increased usage following the revelations. Indeed, a truly private search is a rare thing these days. DuckDuckGo claims it is better than Google because it has less spam and clutter, showcases better instant answers and doesn’t put users in filter bubbles.