Likely sensing an opportunity after Google’s recent encrypted search announcement, Ixquick — a tiny and widely unknown search engine — has announced that it will make SSL encryption the default on all searches.
Ixquick says it became the first search engine to offer encrypted search back in 2009. In its announcement, Ixquick notes that the major search engines have recently begun to offer SSL encrypted searching.
Other search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing have begun to follow Ixquick’s lead by offering SSL encryption. However, the privacy benefits of using SSL with other major search engines may be misleading, since those search engines themselves record users’ IP address and store extensive records of their searches.
Ixquick also has a sister search engine, Startpage, that’s also encrypting all searches. Startpage’s premise is that it removes all personally identifiable information and then submits the search query to Google, then returns Google’s search results “in total privacy.”