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Thread: Private search engine comparison

  1. #1
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    Private search engine comparison

    I rarely use Google these days. I use Startpage.
    I was curious about the differences among the privacy respecting search engines so I did some research & found this >>> https://www.startpage.com/privacy-pl...ine-comparison

    IP Address Protection: When you visit Startpage, their servers change your IP address to 0.0.0.0 rather than logging any amount of your IP address.
    Now that's ^^ awesome.

    If you are looking for search engines that respect your privacy read that article.
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    Re: Private search engine comparison

    @linuxyogi

    You are taking to this privacy stuff like a fish takes to water!

    SearX is also excellent. Here's a link to a SearX gateway: https://search.disroot.org/

    You will have to make your own determination as to how trustworthy you feel disroot to be.

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    Re: Private search engine comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by DuckHook View Post
    @linuxyogi

    You are taking to this privacy stuff like a fish takes to water!

    SearX is also excellent. Here's a link to a SearX gateway: https://search.disroot.org/

    You will have to make your own determination as to how trustworthy you feel disroot to be.
    Didn't know about SearX. From the same article I linked they say :

    I won’t dive into SearX because it is best served as a self-hosted search option that can be programmed to scrape results from any search engine you please. Usually, SearX is used by more advanced users or people with a more serious threat model.
    I don't why they say its for "advanced users". I will just use it & try to find that myself.

    Edit : The site is down
    error.png
    (Click to enlarge)
    Last edited by linuxyogi; March 23rd, 2021 at 06:40 AM.
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    Re: Private search engine comparison

    SearX is designed to allow self‑hosting. This is probably what the author meant by "more serious threat model": when in doubt, it doesn't get any safer than hosting your own search engine. However, it is not necessary to host your own. Since SearX is a widely distributed and federated meta search engine, a number of entities already run such engines that are open for community use. I linked you to one of them.

    The site you tried is not the official SearX site. Try the following link instead: https://searx.github.io/searx/

    This site contains a further link setting out a list of providers who run SearX instances: https://searx.space/

    Note that you are entering the world of small providers. That carries its own form of risk. Some run such instances because they are idealists who believe in privacy and anonymity. Others do so for brownie points because they already run SearX for their own organization and see no problem extending this service to the public as part of their existing infrastructure. But I wouldn't be surprised to find the usual assortment of scumbags sprinkled among them who are phishing for unsuspecting marks.

    I'm reasonably sure of Disroot's idealism, but that's very much my own opinion. Proceed cautiously all the same. Be doubly careful with referrals gleaned from some list posted online.

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    Re: Private search engine comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by DuckHook View Post
    But I wouldn't be surprised to find the usual assortment of scumbags sprinkled among them who are phishing for unsuspecting marks.
    In that case I will just keep using Startpage. Which search engine do you use yourself ? Do you use SearX ?
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  6. #6
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    Re: Private search engine comparison

    i've used Startpage previously but found it too slow to load,although i like that they give google search results .

    I use duckduckgo now . Cant complain
    xubuntu 20.04.2 LTS (focal fossa)

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    Re: Private search engine comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by linuxyogi View Post
    …Which search engine do you use yourself ? Do you use SearX ?
    My main go-to is DuckDuckGo. I do use SearX as my secondary search engine when the results from DuckDuckGo feel insufficient, but only through that link I posted earlier. I trust Disroot not to skim my search results, but that's because I've gotten comfortable with their site maintainers through other interactions within that platform, primarily XMPP chat. They are a bunch of idealists who run their site for privacy/anonymity reasons and are supported by a nonprofit foundation. The maintainers have day jobs with understanding employers, but who knows how long such an arrangement can persist? If they shut down at some point, I will go looking for another gateway.

    SearX is an excellent engine. Unlike the others, it's a metasearch engine, which is just a technospeak way of saying that it aggregates the results of other search engines while stripping inquiries of all identifying data. It also strips results of all ads, so this already means the elimination of one of the biggest threat vectors. How often have you used even DuckDuckGo or Startpage and inadvertently hit the first result which turns out to be an ad linked site with unknown fingerprinting practices? SearX is FOSS, tested and actually not too complex. I know of a few organizations that have set up their own instances and force all internal searches through it because, provided it is set up properly, it is safer.

    Here are SearX's own views on running private instances: https://searx.github.io/searx/user/own-instance.html

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    Re: Private search engine comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by 3nd View Post
    i've used Startpage previously but found it too slow to load
    Interesting. I just tried it on my Brave instance and it loads quite quickly. No difference that I can sense between it and Google to be honest.
    I use duckduckgo now . Cant complain
    Agree. 95% of the time, the results are more than satisfactory. When they aren't, there are plenty of one‑off alternatives. I don't understand why so many are willing to sacrifice privacy for the sake of that remaining smidgen of search accuracy. I've also noticed that DDG will sometimes give better results than Google. I suspect this is because of Google's vested interest in promoting favoured sites versus DDG's fairer algorithms.

  9. #9
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    Re: Private search engine comparison

    I just tried it on my Brave instance and it loads quite quickly
    yes , i gave it another shot and it seems to load faster than before .
    think i'll stick with startpage for awhile and see how it goes.
    xubuntu 20.04.2 LTS (focal fossa)

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    Re: Private search engine comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by 3nd View Post
    …think i'll stick with startpage for awhile and see how it goes.
    This just in: https://www.theregister.com/2021/03/...rurls_removed/

    Further reasons (as if we needed more) to look at all things Google through lenses of scepticism.

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