Neowin: DuckDuckGo updates extension to block Google’s FLoC tracking. “DuckDuckGo, the privacy search engine, has updated its DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials extension for Chrome to block Google’s new tracking method FLoC (Federated Learning of Cohorts). The update to the DuckDuckGo add-on comes after Google began a FLoC trial which opted Chrome users in without the option to opt-out unless they turned off third-party cookies which would break some websites.”
Search Engine Journal: DuckDuckGo Blasts Google Over New iOS Privacy Labels. “As is now required by Apple, Google is providing privacy labels for each of the apps which list the data they collect from users and what the data is used for. The long list of information Google collects from iOS app users is the subject of DuckDuckGo’s latest attack against the search giant.”
Neowin: DuckDuckGo enables Global Privacy Control on mobile and desktop by default. “Late last year, DuckDuckGo joined a privacy-focused initiative called Global Privacy Control (GPC) along with other organizations and individuals in an effort to develop an open standard to help users assert their rights against online tracking. Now, it’s bringing that online privacy protection to a new level.”
ZDNet: DuckDuckGo surpasses 100 million daily search queries for the first time. “The achievement comes after a period of sustained growth the company has been seeing for the past two years, and especially since August 2020, when the search engine began seeing more than 2 billion search queries a month on a regular basis. The numbers are small in comparison to Google’s 5 billion daily search queries but it’s a positive sign that users are looking for alternatives.”
Fast Company: DuckDuckGo, EFF, and others just launched privacy settings for the whole internet. “A group of tech companies, publishers, and activist groups including the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Mozilla, and DuckDuckGo are backing a new standard to let internet users set their privacy settings for the entire web.”
The Verge: DuckDuckGo reinstated in India after being unreachable since July 1st. “Privacy-focused search engine DuckDuckGo has been restored in India after being unreachable for many users there since July 1st, Android Police reported. Reports about what was causing the outage have varied.” I’m glad this was resolved relatively quickly, because it was weird.
BNN Bloomberg: Google search a target of U.S. antitrust probes, rival says. “U.S. federal and state authorities are asking detailed questions about how to limit Google’s power in the online search market as part of their antitrust investigations into the tech giant, according to rival DuckDuckGo Inc. Gabriel Weinberg, chief executive officer of the privacy-focused search engine, said he has spoken with state regulators, and talked with the U.S. Justice Department as recently as a few weeks ago.”
CNET: Privacy-focused DuckDuckGo launches new effort to block online tracking. “The company said Thursday it’s started sharing a data set called Tracker Radar that details 5,326 internet domains used by 1,727 companies and organizations that track you online. The data is available to anyone, and browser maker Vivaldi said on Tuesday it has begun doing so.”
Lifehacker: Use DuckDuckGo ‘Lite’ for Absurdly Fast Search Results. “Most folks probably think of DuckDuckGo as the more privacy-focused alternative to Google, but one of the lesser-discussed benefits ditching all that data tracking is increased search speed. The normal DuckDuckGo search eats up less data and requires fewer requests than Google, but there’s also a ‘Lite’ version of the DuckDuckGo page that loads results much faster.”
Neowin: Open letter from 50+ organizations want Google to do something about Android bloatware. “Over 50 organizations including the Privacy International, Digital Rights Foundation, DuckDuckGo, and Electronic Frontier Foundation have written an open letter to Alphabet and Google’s CEO Sundar Pichai about exploitive pre-installed bloatware on Android devices and how they pose a privacy risk to consumers.”
Neowin: Google announces the ‘winners’ of the controversial choice screen search engine auction. “Google has announced the search engines that it’ll show to new European Android phone users as an alternate choice to its own Google Search service. This change comes as a result of Google being fined €4.34 billion for ‘illegal tying of Google’s search and browser apps’ after which the firm announced it will begin asking users which search engine they want to use on their Android phones.” DuckDuckGo should be popping champagne.
Wired: I ditched Google for DuckDuckGo. Here’s why you should too. “What was the last thing you searched for online? For me, it was ‘$120 in pounds’. Before that, I wanted to know the capital of Albania (Tirana), the Twitter handle of Liberal Democrat deputy leader Ed Davey (he’s @EdwardJDavey) and dates of bank holidays in the UK for 2019 (it’s a late Easter next year, folks). Thrilling, I’m sure you’ll agree. But something makes these searches, in internet terms, a bit unusual. Shock, horror, I didn’t use Google. I used DuckDuckGo. And, after two years in the wilderness, I’m pretty sure I’m sold on a post-Google future.”