DuckDuckGo, a search engine that lays huge emphasis in the privacy of its users and maintains that those using the service aren’t tracked ever, have crossed 10 billion anonymous searches — a chunk of those came in 2016.
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Post Snowden-era has been filled with questions of surveillance on the netizens worldwide and that has led users to increasingly turn to services which protect their identity and don’t track their internet activity.
DuckDuckGo recorded 4 billion searches in 2016 alone.
Now that Donald Trump has assumed office at White House, privacy concerns among netizens are at an all-time high, presumably due to his stand in favour of surveillance.
“Our vision is to raise the standard of trust online, and in service of that vision, our mission is to be the world’s most trusted search engine. We are growing faster than ever as people are actively seeking out ways to reduce their digital footprint,” said Gabriel Weinberg, CEO and Founder of DuckDuckGo.
The service reached an internal record of 14 million searches on January 10, 2017, which isn’t much when compared to Google’s gigantic 3.4 billion searches per day average, but still shows that an increasing number of people are concerned about being tracked.
The service was started back in 2008 with the same vision — to build a trusted search engine which doesn’t track user activity — but has only recently started to get a boost.
Signal, an encrypted messaging app, received a 70% boost in downloads, a week before Trump’s ascension to the President’s chair and now DuckDuckGo has been receiving a boost too.
DuckDuckGo’s user base received a significant boost since Apple’s Safari and Mozilla’s Firefox browsers integrated the search engine as their default in 2014.
DuckDuckGo also donated $225,000 to nine organisations — including Freedom of Press Foundation, Tor Project, CryptTech project and others — who are also contributing their resources towards a secure and surveillance-free web.