February 10, 2014 10:34 pm -

Anxiety over the tracking of searches on Google has turned out to be a huge boost for other search engines.  FORBES is reporting that a wide variety of websites like Duck Duck Go and Ixquick have experienced major increases in traffic due to privacy concerns with the dominant search engine Google.

Ixquick, which started the same year as Google in 1998, and its sister site Startpage had fewer than a million visitors a day in January 2012 when Google changed its privacy policy to combine user information from its various services. Within two months the alternative sites saw traffic double. By spring 2013, the number of visitors was up to about 2.5 million a day. Then Edward Snowden’s revelations about government snooping led to a new wave of interest in the sites. Traffic today is more than five million users a day.

Google has taken notice of this trend and is making great efforts to reassure its users that they are safe from unwanted snooping. A spokesman for the company, who oddly did not want his name used in the FORBES article, maintains that there is nothing for Google users to worry about.

“Google goes above and beyond to make sure your information is safe, secure and always available to you,” the spokesman said. “Our commitment to the security of your data is absolute — we have more than 400 full-time security experts providing design reviews, consulting, training and education across the company, as well as building privacy and security technologies into our products.”

D.B. Hirsch
D.B. Hirsch is a political activist, news junkie, and retired ad copy writer and spin doctor. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.