The Computer Society of Kenya

Since 1986


Sunday April 29, 2018

Thanks to technology, our lives have become intertwined than any other time in history.

We interact with each other online via social media, email, and forums.

We do business online as data-driven channels follow us picking subtle details of our online activity.

The online activities are fundamentally linked to what we come across in real life.

As the world’s most popular search engine, Google has created an enormously popular service — search — with many peripheral platforms such as YouTube, Gmail, Google Maps and a host of others used by hundreds of millions of people around the world.

These services are easy to use, deliver fast and relevant results, and are the primary search destinations for many worldwide.

However, with this ease of use comes privacy concerns, especially in the realm of data storage, search tracking, and use of personal information.

Primary concerns about the right to privacy, especially in regards to Google and the amount of information that they track, store, and ultimately use, are becoming increasingly a hot potato for users.

There are genuine reasons for privacy concerns when you use Google and Bing to find content.

Everything you search for, when using these engines, is tracked and can be used later.

Oftentimes we search for stuff that is not suitable for anonymous online prying eyes.

Even when you browse on incognito mode, your browser does not give you the level of privacy you think it does.

How do you explain the appearance of ads on your Facebook or inside your Gmail that are related to your recent searches?

It is because the browser took note of your online activity.

To cover online track marks, go for private search engines.

Private Search Engines do not store your queries or track your steps on the Internet.

Such engines include, and

The StartPage gives you the search results anonymously.


It functions with the idea of the proxy search engine, meaning that it takes the input but doesn’t use your real computer or phone address while looking and listing the information you search online.

It does that by changing the address such that no-one can check your browsing history.

Google and Bing collect and keep a user’s search history.

According to Wikipedia, DuckDuckgo search engine emphasizes the protection of searchers privacy.

It distinguishes itself from other search engines by not profiling its users and by deliberately showing all users the same search results for a given search term.

One distinguishing factor of DuckDuckgo is that it returns the best results, rather than the most results.

It generates those results from over 400 individual sources, including crowdsourced sites such as Wikipedia, and other search engines like Bing, Yahoo!, and Yandex.

Hulbee on the other hand has user-friendly security and privacy features, especially for protecting children web users against online predators.

The major convenience of Hulbee is that it is developed and monitored by Switzerland and works in the laws of Swiss.

This means that overall data, browsing history or other personal information doesn’t sell out to another government agencies.


Whether or not you’re concerned about the information in your Google searches being used to enhance the relevancy of your queries online, it’s always a good idea to make sure that all information shared on any service is within the bounds of personal privacy that you are most comfortable with.

While we should certainly keep the platforms and services we use accountable to a common standard of user privacy, the safety and security of our information online is ultimately up to each one of us to determine.

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