Startpage, in an effort to reduce the information in digital footprints and profiles, is partnering with Ivacy VPN, a private VPN service with more than 2 million customers.
Startpage has been added as a private search option when Ivacy users make a VPN connection through the Ivacy app.
Both companies share a commitment to online privacy. Startpage and Ivacy VPN do not track users. Their technology masks IP addresses, offers 256-bit encryption, does not sell user data to third parties and enables users to remain protected and anonymous while surfing the internet.
VPNs mask IP address to make the user invisible online. It replaces the real IP address with one from our secure servers to anonymize your location. With a VPN connection, users can bypass geo-restrictions and appear to be browsing from a different location. Some might take exception to this practice because hackers have used them to hide their whereabouts. When used correctly, VPNs can help users keep their data secure.
Startpage also disables browser fingerprinting.
“Think about the digital profile that search engines have on people,” said Kelly Finnerty, director of brand and content at Startpage. “It might have the health or political issues you’ve been researching. All those get collected. You can easily clear your browser history, but it’s more difficult to clear your search history.”
Virtual private networks do not disable browser fingerprinting, Finnerty said. If users are logged in to Google Chrome through a VPN browser, fingerprinting still occurs. For example, when browsing with Bing, the search engine can still keep a record of the IP address about the searches being conducted.
Partnerships with companies like Ivacy are important for Startpage because VPN users are a step ahead in terms of tracking and data collection -- beyond location and IP address.
An option to privately browse with Startpage will automatically be seen by customers of Ivacy who can access the VPN through mobile apps and operating systems.
Ivacy offers several VPN options that provide a safe, private browsing experience. The company was founded in 2007.
Earlier this year, Vivaldi which added the Startpage privacy search engine as an option after some 84% of its users said the privacy reputation of a search engine is important to them.