Growing concerns over privacy have raised the question whether it is time to move away from Google search. This has already prompted smaller companies to come up with alternatives.
Although it is hard, if not impossible, to get out of Google's ecosystem, it does offer the opportunity to avoid intrusive data collection by Google's vast apparatus, albeit not entirely.
Internet users concerned with the creepy omnipresence of Google have been gravitating towards alternatives. If you are one of them, then it is worth checking out these three search engines that promise to prioritise privacy and security and are some of the best alternatives to Google search.
Brave Search hails from the creative minds behind the cutting-edge, privacy-focused Brave web browser. The search engine promised "unmatched privacy." According to many, tech testers Brave is already the most private browser, and likewise their claim of unmatched privacy has some grounds.
"We don't track you, your searches, or your clicks. Ever," Brave boldly claims. Moreover, you don't have to sign in (in fact, there is no option for signing in). While your IP address is utilised for providing localised contents, Brave doesn't save it, and you can disable that access easily.
Despite being in beta, Brave Search is fully functioning and produces relevant results. The result page is quite good-looking. Maps and audio cannot be used to narrow your search, however; only image, video, and news search are available as of now.
Although it typically operates a little more slowly than its competitors, it derives its search results from its web crawling index and "anonymous API calls to third parties."
The interface of the search engine is simplistic and the results are mostly accurate, despite not having the comprehensive info panels present on Bing or Google.
Unlike Brave search, it has maps option (thanks to Apple) in its interface along with images, video and news. Moreover, DuckDuckGo provides more header options based on the searched word, including definition, meanings, nutrition, and recipes.
Although some trackers are allowed in the engine unlike Brave, these are only from DDG itself. It has been justified for the sake of better results. Another nice touch is that it provides a Tor.onion version of its search engine for ultimate privacy.
And finally, if you enjoy DuckDuckGo, you might also enjoy its browser. The company already offers mobile browsers and is developing DDG desktop browsers.
The search engine, based in Berlin, considers itself rather a social business with their motto of privacy. The company claims to be carbon-negative and maintains full transparency in its dealings.
As of October this year, the company is said to have planted over 160 millions trees since its beginning. As a social business, its business model is different from its peers. In fact, three-quarters of its profit comes from advertising in tree-planting projects.
Ecosia rewards its users by planting trees against their activity through the search engine. Because it helps plant trees in ecologically critical locations, Ecosia makes individuals feel good about their online searches.
More than 147 million trees have been planted under Ecosia's initiative thus far. Although the result pages produced by the search engine need a lot of improvements.
The website claims that it does not "create personal profiles of you based on your search history" and that all queries are anonymised within a week. While Bing trackers were discovered, the website is transparent about utilising cookies, which you may turn off.