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Private ads on our search engine

It is a myth that search engines need to track you to make money. The majority of our revenue is from private ads on our search engine. On most other search engines, ads are based on profiles compiled from your personal information, such as search, browsing, and purchase history. Since we don’t have that information per our Privacy Policy, search ads on DuckDuckGo are based on the search results page you’re viewing instead of being based on who other companies and their tracking algorithms assume you are as a person. For example, if you search for cars, we’ll show you ads about cars. We’ve even created a way to show localized ads while still keeping you completely anonymous. See the Anonymous Localized Results help page for more information on how we do this technically.

Advertising on DuckDuckGo takes the form of sponsored links that appear adjacent to search results. Viewing ads is privacy protected by DuckDuckGo and most ad clicks are managed by Microsoft’s ad network, though even in that case, “Microsoft Advertising does not associate your ad-click behavior with a user profile. It also does not store or share that information other than for accounting purposes.” We have a similar arrangement with TripAdvisor.

This is generally how advertising appears on DuckDuckGo:

Screenshot showing ads in DuckDuckGo search results

If you think you see low-quality ads, for example, ads that seem irrelevant or suspicious, please use the ‘Report Ad’ link for the ad in question on the search results page and follow the prompts.

Visit Advertise on DuckDuckGo Search to learn more about why you should advertise on DuckDuckGo.

Visit Microsoft Advertising to start buying search advertising on DuckDuckGo.

Subscription fees from Privacy Pro

We also make money from subscription fees. Specifically, the monthly or annual fee that subscribers pay to access Privacy Pro, our three-in-one subscription service that includes a VPN, a Personal Information Removal service and an Identity Theft Restoration service.

Prior versions on GitHub.