Ever since the news hit about the NSA PRISM surveillance program in the United States, many people have become much more concerned about what exactly search engines are tracking about them.
Although Google, Bing, and Yahoo have stringent privacy policies, there have been enough people worried that they have begun looking at alternative search engines, particularly so-called “private search engines.”
DuckDuckGo is probably the best-known of the private search engines, and as a result it has recorded record traffic and shows no sign of stopping. In fact, since the PRISM news broke, nearly every day has been a record search day for DuckDuckGo, including yesterday where it broke 3 million searches for the first time. That is nearly double its pre-PRISM daily search totals.
DuckDuckGo updates their search traffic daily here.
DuckDuckGo launched in 2008 and gained popularity by not tracking what individuals are searching. As of its 4th birthday in September, DuckDuckGo was seeing between 1.3 million and 1.5 million direct queries per day, on average.
It took DuckDuckGo 1,445 days to reach 1 million searches, another 483 to hit 2 million, and then only 8 days to pass 3 million searches, according to the search engine.