Online map searches just got more private

Patrick Devaney


Privacy is a big deal these days. As tech giants like Facebook and Google increase their influence over our daily lives, we become more acutely aware of the increasing efforts they put into knowing everything about us. Knowing what we do can make big tech companies a lot of money and that leads the likes of Facebook to try and monitor people who aren’t even members of Facebook and Google to keep extensive records of everything we’ve ever searched.

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It isn’t all bad though. As well as handy tutorials from Softonic teaching you how to purge your Google data or learn what Facebook has on you, there are companies out there that purposely avoid collecting user data. Privacy forms the cornerstone of their business model. One such company is DuckDuckGo, which runs a competing search engine to Google. DuckDuckGo doesn’t track your browsing habits or mine your personal data. The problem is that it is hard for DuckDuckGo to compete with Google and offer all the features the search giant can offer. Enter Apple.

Apple Maps will now show location results for DuckDuckGo on mobile and desktop

Location searches are an incredibly useful way of finding what you’re looking for. To this end, we’ve recently seen a spate of updates to Google Maps as Google tries to turn it into the ultimate business directory. DuckDuckGo has, until now, been unable to compete with this. Now, however, whenever somebody searches for something using DuckDuckGo location results will show up on a small Apple Maps module, just like Google would show location results using Google Maps.

private location searches

According to the blog post announcing the Apple partnership, DuckDuckGo explained that there will also be a new Maps tab for all search results. Clicking the Maps tab or on the small Apple Maps module will open up a map for further searches. The new Maps page will then list all the locations matching the search term in the selected area, again, just as a Google search would. This new function will work for addresses, geographical places, local businesses, types of businesses, and nearby places.

DuckDuckGo was also eager to point out that location searches will remain anonymous, saying, “Naturally, our strict privacy policy of not collecting or sharing any personal information extends to this integration. We do not send any personally identifiable information such as IP address to Apple or other third parties. For local searches, where your approximate location information is sent by your browser to us, we discard it immediately after use.”

Trying to maintain a level of privacy these days can seem like an uphill struggle. Often, you’ll have to sacrifice functionality in order to keep your data private. This deal means that this is no longer the case for performing location searches with DuckDuckGo.

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