Traffic skyrockets on revelations of US Government surveillance program
NEW YORK - Traffic at the private search engines StartPage and Ixquick has dramatically increased this week as Internet users react to news of the PRISM data sharing program. Combined, the two search engines served 3.4 million direct private searches on Wednesday, an increase of 500,000 over last week.
“People are fed up with being spied on, and we’re delighted that now they’re finally taking a stand and doing something about it.”
“Our search traffic has already grown by 75% over last year, and now it’s really exploding,” said CEO Robert Beens. “People are outraged over alleged secret US surveillance programs and they’re looking for safe, effective search alternatives. We’re excited at this growth and we welcome our newest users with open arms.”
StartPage and Ixquick call themselves “the world’s most private search engines” due to powerful features that protect user privacy. StartPage lets users access Google results in total privacy, and Ixquick provides private search results that do not include Google results.
The company has never taken part in any government data collection program, including PRISM, and has never turned over user data to any government entity anywhere on earth. With its headquarters in the Netherlands, the company is not directly subject to US jurisdiction, nor does it participate in US government surveillance or data collection programs.
To further protect their users, StartPage and Ixquick offer the following privacy features:
- No IP address recorded
- No record made of user searches
- No tracking cookies used
- Encrypted connections (HTTPS) to prevent eavesdropping
- 14-year company track record
- Third-party certified
- Free, easy-to-use proxy available with every search
To complement its search products, the company will be introducing StartMail, a private, subscription-based email platform with strong encryption, later this year. Anyone interested in beta testing the program upon its release can sign up at www.Startmail.com.
“We’re happy to be a safe haven for people seeking shelter from Internet data surveillance and abuse,” says Harvard-trained privacy expert Dr. Katherine Albrecht, who helped develop StartPage and StartMail. “People are fed up with being spied on, and we’re delighted that now they’re finally taking a stand and doing something about it.”