Leave a comment

Search the web away from prying eyes

Search the web away from prying eyes
Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

When you do a Google search online, you probably think you're just searching for information, and finding it. But Google is notorious for keeping track of your personal information.

Google mostly keeps tabs on you for a fairly innocent-sounding reason: to show you ads you'll find interesting. But what else is it tracking, and who else are they sharing your information with? Google has taken some heat over the years for its tracking habits, and you can take some control, but maybe you want a search site that keeps your private information private.

One of those sites is Ixquick (it also goes by StartPage.com), which calls itself the world’s most private search engine. It doesn’t record your IP address, browser information or search history, so advertisers can’t track you.

This search site gives you the option to keep your Web searches private by using a proxy. So sites you visit won't even know your real IP address. This is similar to a program like Tor, but without the hassle of setting it up. Using Ixquick's proxy may slow down your searches, but it's worth it, if you're less concerned about speed than you are about your privacy.

To get the most privacy with Ixquick, just do a search like "Komando." Your search results will look similar to Google's search results, with a list of websites it has found that match your search.

Each result, however, has three ways to click on a page. Click on a link to visit a page unprotected, like normal. Choose Highlight and you can see the basics of a site, like headlines and some images. Then, you can decide if you want to visit the whole site.

Finally, you can choose Proxy, which will keep you invisible to any site that you visit. Those sites will see Ixquick's IP address, not yours.

Ixquick also keeps you out of filter bubbles. A filter bubble is when a site uses your past searches to tailor your search specifically to your interests. That sounds good, and can be. But, the downside is these filters can leave out interest search results just because it thinks you wouldn't want to see them.

Plus, Ixquick has a neat star system that rates the accuracy of your search results by cross-checking with other search engines. For example, four stars means that four other search engines agreed on that search term result.

Note: Want to know just how private Ixquick is? Read its easy-to-read, yet exhaustive, privacy policy here.

Next Story
An alternative to Google that protects your privacy and keeps kids safe
Previous Cool Sites

An alternative to Google that protects your privacy and keeps kids safe

37 fun and exciting games created for the graphic designer in you
Next Cool Sites

37 fun and exciting games created for the graphic designer in you

View Comments ()