This past week, two articles taught me (once again), "Don't believe anything they tell you and suspect everything."
The first (chronologically) reported that online searches done even in the U.S. and Canada using Bing are censored in the start menu search, Bing, and even Duckduckgo which uses Bing's (but not Google's, lol) autosuggestion and shares data with MS. More on that, later. The duplicity of that in its advertising alone is staggering considering how Duckduckgo states how it respects your privacy and prevents tracking a la Google.
Notice which company isn't mentioned in this graph from Duckduckgo's website: Microsoft.
What's being censored?
"You may find it hard to search for people considered politically sensitive in China if you're using Bing — even if you're in the United States. The Citizen Lab, a research lab based at the University of Toronto's Munk School, has analyzed Bing's autosuggestion system and found that names of Chinese party leaders and dissidents don't automatically show up like they usually would when you start typing. They're apparently the second largest category of names censored by autosuggest, next to names related to pornography and eroticism.
The lab found that the censorship applies to names typed in Chinese characters and in English letters. Plus, it affects not just Bing, but also the Windows Start menu search and DuckDuckGo, which uses Bing's autosuggestion system. Perhaps more importantly, it applies to various regions in the world, including China, the US and Canada. Some of the most prominent examples of names Microsoft won't autocomplete are President Xi Jinping, human rights activist Liu Xiaobo and the Tank Man, which is the nickname for the unidentified Chinese man who famously stood in front of the tanks leaving Tiananmen Square." - M. Moon, Engaget
The second article revealed that Duckduckgo's searches aren't as private as we've been led to believe.
"DuckDuckGo made a deal with the devil. Due to a confidential search agreement, the DuckDuckGo browser does not block all Microsoft trackers. What’s worse, DuckDuckGo only acknowledged this “privacy hole” after it was discovered by a security researcher.
As you may know, DuckDuckGo pulls its search results from other services, primarily Bing. You may also know that clicking a Microsoft-provided ad in DuckDuckGo will reveal your IP address to the Microsoft Advertising service—this is explicitly stated on DuckDuckGo’s website and in the company’s search engine.
But this partnership goes a bit deeper than we thought. Security researcher @thezedwards found that the mobile DuckDuckGo browser does not block Microsoft trackers on third-party websites, such as the Facebook-owned Workplace.com....
Gabriel Weinberg says that DuckDuckGo is “working tirelessly behind the scenes” to improve its deal with Microsoft. Additionally, he expects DuckDuckGo to “include more third-party Microsoft protection” in a future update.
Yeah, that’s great. But why are we only hearing about this now? We’ve all seen the ads and billboards—privacy and transparency are the biggest features in DuckDuckGo’s browser. Oh, but Microsoft gets an exception, and users aren’t allowed to know about it?" - Andrew Heinzman, ReviewGeek
The lack of transparency, the deliberate misdirection, and the omission of truth in Duckduckgo's advertising and pretense of concern for your privacy are outrageous and egregious. They are deserving of contempt.
So, if you ask me which search engine you should use to ensure your privacy, I'll refer you to this article: "10 Privacy Oriented Alternative Search Engines To Google"...just disregard the first on their list.