Tech companies like Google collect a huge amount of data on you each time you go online. Some feel that this data is invasive and unnecessary and that Google knows more about them that they want it to.
The Startpage search engine was founded in the Netherlands in 2006. It gives users several layers of privacy when they search the web.
It protects users by European Privacy law and offers Anonymous view with its search results.
This is a private browsing feature that allows you to explore the web and search results without any tracking.
The search engine's anonymous view -- displayed next to each search result on its page -- enables you to visit any link in privacy.
The search engine does not track, log, or share data or searching history. It pays Google to use its search results and removes all trackers and logs from the results to give you ad-free search results.
It does not collect or share your personal information, and its servers have no profile information on its users. However, when you leave the Startpage browser to browse other search pages, you could end up with cookies installed on your device.
So how does Startpage generate revenue?
The search engine generates its income from contextual advertising. Each time you perform a search, you may see up to three sponsored search results at the top of the results page.
These ads are labeled accordingly. Clicking a sponsored link will take you off the Startpage to an advertiser's website.
The company acknowledges that serving contextual ads to users via search results is less profitable than serving behavioral ads, the company feels it is a far more ethical model on which to build a company -- which has now been profitable for over 13 years.
Startpage co-founder and CEO Robert Beens commented on his company's business model:
"At Startpage, we have no idea who or where you are, so you're never being profiled and receive the exact same non-biased search results as anyone else in the world. Furthermore, we protect you from the more widely publicized threats such as price trackers (that give some people higher prices on products), identity theft, and personal data blackmail."
Today Startpage has announced a partnership with the Vivaldi browser. The browser has today added Startpage as a search engine option for Vivaldi browser users.
Users will find Startpage in the search field to the right of the address bar in Vivaldi. Clicking on the magnifying glass icon will display a menu of search engine options which includes Startpage
"Vivaldi browser's speed, ad blockers, and tracking protection make it a highly customizable alternative to Chrome and Firefox and an ideal partner for us."
If you care about getting accurate search results and do not like DuckDuckGo (which gives Bing/Yahoo results), Startpage is certainly an option. With the Anonymous View feature, you can click and visit the web sites knowing that those annoying ads will not pursue you wherever you go.
Our privacy is really important right now -- especially as the majority of the world is now home, indoors, and communicating mostly online. If you want to see Google results without ads following you around wherever you visit, Startpage is certainly worth a try.