Startpage is the most private search engine in the world. It has a few amazing features to support this claim.
For instance, it does not keep logs. It also acts as a proxy for users to view search results without being tracked.
Besides, Startpage won the Best Dutch Privacy Award in 2019, mainly due to its Anonymous View feature.
However, despite being the most private search engine on the web, it does have some shortcomings. These shortcomings are the reason for the popularity of other search engine options.
For instance, it does not manage ads. Once you click on an ad, you will be exposed to usual data-collection tricks from advertisers.
Startpage tends to collect some users’ data. For instance, since it is a for-profit business, they need to give its advertisers information about the kind of people who read its search content.
Rather than being at the forefront with the users’ data, Startpage buries users’ information deep within its privacy page.
Fortunately for everyone else, there are other best alternatives to Startpage. Read on to learn about them.
DuckDuckGo is one of the world’s most popular privacy-focused search engines. For instance, it is widely known for constantly monitoring and auditing its platform for vulnerabilities.
Like Startpage, DuckDuckGo provides a wide spectrum of instant answers to your search queries. It also has a simple, user-friendly, and customizable user interface.
However, there are many reasons why you should consider switching to DuckDuckGo from Startpage.
For instance, it does not collect your data and information. As a result, it gives you private and clean search results without tracking your IP address.
It has a Safe Search filter bubble that checks every search word against its blocklist of bad words. It also offers a super-fast loading speed.
With DuckDuckGo, you can customize the search query results. For instance, you can add images and change colors and fonts.
It uses non-destructive and non-intrusive ads that will not track you. Besides, it does not spy on your internet browsing history.
With DuckDuckGo, you can search sensitive topics without being blocked because it is censorship-free.
DuckDuckGo has mobile apps for Android and iOS devices. And just like Startpage, you can install its free browser extension to your Google browser and set it as your default search engine.
Therefore, DuckDuckGo is a perfect alternative to Startpage. However, it uses Bang syntax, which does not guarantee the privacy that you get with Startpage. It also doesn’t have additional features such as email alerts and RSS feeds.
Qwant is a French search engine that offers users privacy-focused search results.
Unlike Startpage, Qwant does not have trackers and ads built directly into its interface. Instead, it uses third-party analytics tools and ad networks to collect information on how users interact with content on the internet.
It also does not track your geographical location. Besides, there are no tracking cookies involved. As a result, nothing will be sent to the Qwant servers.
It has a fast loading time because it does not depend on crawling each site on the web. Instead, it utilizes pre-built indexes that have links to relevant search results.
Its easy-to-use interface makes it a perfect alternative to Startpage. For instance, the main menu is divided into four sections with subcategories that you can expand easily.
Besides, the customizable settings will allow for better usability and readability. You can change the number of search results and their order of display.
Qwant has mobile apps for both Android and iOS devices.
Qwant’s search history is designed to allow you to save previous queries and access them later without having to perform another query or re-enter the keyword.
It is also free from ads. For instance, it only displays sponsored listings such as discounts, services, deals, events, coupons, etc.
Yahoo is a top search engine that has been around since the birth of the internet.
However, it has moved from being a major search engine providing every kind of internet service to a minor search engine offering just search and email. But still, it is an option if you want to move from Startpage.
This landing page has a lot more to offer than just a search. For instance, it offers trending topics, news, and a lot of clickbait. Besides, there is also email, weather, shopping, etc.
With Yahoo Search, you can view private search results selected from other sources like your Yahoo Mail account. However, you can only view private search results if you are signed in.
Unlike Startpage, Yahoo collects personal data. However, this helps give you personalized news based on your location and more targeted ads.
Since it collects your data, the searches are more accurate.
Besides being a well-established search engine name on the web, Yahoo searches are super fast and relevant. It also works on any device.
Although Yahoo can be a perfect alternative to Startpage, it is just a rebadged Bing. For instance, the home page’s news and other page elements can be distracting.
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SearX is a non-commercial, decentralized, and privacy-respected metasearch engine. It collects results from over 70 search services.
It provides secure and encrypted connections. For instance, with SearX, you can enjoy search engine power without being tracked or profiled.
SearX also does not share or collect the user’s data, limiting profiling and tracking, thus increasing the user’s online privacy.
Being a customizable search engine, you can modify it easily to your needs.
SearX can be hosted on your computer or server. As such, it is super private as nothing leaves your computer. It has no ads or cookies. Besides, it uses Morty proxy to hide the user’s IP address.
Since it uses Bing and Google, it supports instant answers. For instance, it has the ‘quick answers’ feature for the two search engines.
Infinite Search is an open-source search engine with privacy at its core. It has a central search bar and a clean and crisp user interface, which is very easy to use.
However, unlike Startpage, Infinity Search is not free to use. For instance, you will be required to subscribe to a monthly package of $5 to access the search.
For that subscription, you get access to a zero-tracking search engine. For instance, it will not retain search history and does not trace or track searches.
It also has a smart sidebar that shows the source of search results. The smart sidebar also provides alternative search results for extra goodness.
Infinity Search is a privacy-oriented open-source search engine with no shareholders or ad revenue. Therefore, the ads should not worry you.
Like Startpage, the search results are fast, accurate, and relevant.
Although it can be a perfect alternative to Startpage, there are many other search engines that provide the same things as Infinity Search but do not charge for the privilege.
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MetaGer is a private metasearch engine. Like Startpage, it works by anonymously sending your search queries to multiple search engines and retrieving results.
One feature that makes it a perfect alternative to Startpage is the integrated proxy server.
For instance, MetaGer conceals your IP address, making it more secure than other Startpage alternatives.
With MetaGer, you anonymously open result links. As a result, you can not be tracked on any webpage that you visit.
Being a search engine owned by a non-profit organization, MetaGer provides non-personalized ads. However, you can decide to support it by becoming a member and searching for free ads.
With MetaGer, users are offered guaranteed privacy. For instance, users retain full control over their data and information. Besides, its anonymizing proxy does not track users.
It also protects users against censorship by combining search results from many search engines.
Besides, with MetaGer, you are assured of 100% renewable energy. For instance, its efficient use of resources and sustainability are important to users.
It also has plugins that you can use to install MetaGer as your search engine on iOS and Android smartphones.
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Although it has a silly name, Swisscows is a search engine that takes your privacy seriously. Being a Swiss search engine, its motto is “no data collection.”
Swisscows uses Bing to deliver users’ search results according to the query. For instance, it allows users to preview a website before visiting the site with just a button click.
One major advantage of Swisscows is that it has its private servers. For instance, the users’ data and information do not pass through third parties.
Swisscows generates its revenue through banner ads. Just like Startpage, the ads are not targeted.
However, unlike Startpage, Swisscows is too family-focused. For instance, its search results do not include any content that is pornographic or sexual.
With Swisscows, content or search results that fall under “sexual” are not well explained. And users can not turn off this filter feature. For some, this can be a deal-breaker.
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Disconnect Search is a search engine that is exceptional to the rule that you must spend money every time you use internet services.
For instance, this search engine does not generate revenue. However, it has plans to build a service that will include paid options.
Like Startpage, Disconnect Search gets its results from many other search engines.
The search page will allow you to choose the specific search engine it will see from options such as Yahoo, Bing, etc.
Besides, Disconnect Search submits users’ queries anonymously, just like Startpage. It does not keep a record of the user’s searches, and it can not track you.
One of the most exciting Disconnect Search features is that it displays search results in the style of the specific search engine they come from.
Unlike Startpage, the search result page of Disconnect Search is more visually appealing.
You can also get local results with this search engine by installing a Disconnect Search browser extension. You can then use it to search for results by location.
Ecosia is a search engine that is incredibly unique compared to other Startpage alternatives. For instance, it is completely neutral to CO2 with the promise that it will plant trees every time you use it to search.
Being a non-profit business, Ecosia works by using funds raised from the search ads based on the user’s anonymous search terms. These funds are contributed to charities and organizations to plant trees.
Ecosia does not care about storing the user’s data or search history. It allows users to search without creating any search history profile. They are only interested in trees, not data.
It is also a Bing-based search engine. For instance, its user interface is easy to use.
It is also compatible with desktops, laptops, and smartphones via Android and iOS apps. It also features a Chrome extension that you can download and install.
Therefore, this is one of the most popular Startpage alternatives not only because of privacy but due to many more features.
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10. Brave Search
Brave Search is one of the safest alternatives to Startpage.
It is built off the open-source Chromium web core. Compared to Startpage, this source code is vetted by more security researchers.
By default, Brave Search blocks all creepy and privacy-invasive ads from every website. Besides, trackers are blocked from following you online.
With Brave Search, online privacy is made simple. For instance, it offers you incognito windows, VPN, private search, and even ad-blocking.
It switches in 60 seconds. This means that it quickly imports saved passwords, extensions, and bookmarks.
With Brave Search, you are assured of free video conferencing, independent searches, a customizable news feed, and offline playlists – all this into your browser in one fully private app.
Because of the absence of trackers and ads, this search engine has less stuff on every webpage you visit. This would mean better battery life, faster page load, and mobile data savings.
It also has advanced security features such as onion routing with Tor, IPFS integration, and a custom filter list.
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Presearch is a search engine that harnesses the power of several top search engines and other top data sources to give users a compelling search experience and great search results.
It is built to offer users a decentralized Startpage alternative that works more like a public utility on behalf of the search engine’s community rather than shareholders.
Like Startpage, it also protects the users’ privacy and offers more control and choices while still being censorship-resistant.
With Presearch, users are rewarded in the form of PRE tokens. For instance, users get Presearch cryptocurrency to be incentivized to switch to Presearch from other search engines.
It has Presearch Nodes, which can be installed on any server or computer that supports Docker. Users running Presearch nodes are also rewarded PRE tokens.
Presearch provides users with active personalization and increased search choices. For instance, it will give you control of your experience instead of automated personalization built on a foundation of profiling and tracking users.
Although it is still in development, this Startpage alternative offers users comprehensive search results that are secure.
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You.com is a beta-stage search engine that offers a highly customizable experience.
The search results appear on one webpage. However, they are split into different sections, which you can rearrange as per your preference.
Users can further customize their search results by signing up for a You.com account. This will allow them to add and save apps to their dashboard.
Typically, these apps are the user’s preferred source of information and will appear along with the user’s search results.
With You.com, the first-party cookies are stored for personalization purposes. However, you can entirely eliminate the first-party cookies by browsing privately or via a VPN.
Like Startpage, You.com ensures that the user’s data is kept safe. Besides, the data is not sold to advertisers.
Furthermore, You.com allows users to add developer apps like GitHub to their dashboard.
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13. Search Encrypt
Search Encrypt is a search engine that sources search results from content partners and other search engines such as Yahoo, Bing, Google, etc. It does this in a privacy-safe manner.
Like Startpage, this private search engine anonymizes search queries. It does not retain IP addresses and server logs. Besides, it does not store tracking cookies.
This search engine encrypts users’ terms locally before sending them to the server when it comes to searches.
With Search Encrypt, the browsing history will be erased after 30 minutes of inactivity.
However, Search Encrypt stores your search information to improve its product performance.
Although it is not up there with Startpage, this search engine is reliable enough to be an ideal alternative to Startpage.
Having been launched in 2009, Gibiru is a private search engine similar to Startpage. It has amazing features that make it a perfect Startpage alternative.
Unlike Startpage, Gibiru uses 256-bit AES encryption to fetch search results.
It does not collect the user’s IP address, cookies, or search query history. As such, it can not sell your data to third parties. It can also not identify individual users.
Its search results are sorted into two columns: “censored content” and “all results.” Gibiru’s index is of the links excluded from the curated feeds of the major search engines such as Google.
Therefore, Gibiru meets all the criteria for a good Startpage alternative. However, not much is known about the people that operate Gibiru, although there have never been any privacy concerns involving this search engine.
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Yandex is another search engine that can be a perfect alternative to Startpage.
Unlike Startpage, this search engine offers search services and other search services such as online advertisements, navigation, mobile apps, eCommerce, and transportation.
It also has a browser and it offers the same features as Startpage. However, it has more features such as free email, music, photo storage, videos, live traffic maps, etc.
One feature that makes Yandex stand out is its cloud storage. For instance, users can look up their files in the search engine if they have Yandex’s cloud storage.
Yandex no longer utilizes links in its algorithms. Instead, it relies completely on the keyword ranking data and the user experience.
Although this initiative is still in its early stages, it allows Yandex to give higher-quality search results compared to Startpage.
The best Startpage alternative is DuckDuckGo. It provides a wide spectrum of instant answers to your search queries. It also has a simple, user-friendly, and customizable user interface.
Just like Startpage, DuckDuckGo does not collect any of your data and information. As a result, it gives you private and clean search results without tracking your IP address.
We highly recommend using DuckDuck over any other Startpage alternatives for these and many more reasons. In the long run, it is up to you to decide whether one search engine is more beneficial for your needs than the other.
Scott L. Macarthur is a marketing consultant and an online author. He is mostly engaged in providing his expertise to startups and SMBs. He is also an author on TheNextWeb.