VPNs have a solid use case, though of course cannot provide the anonymity of the Tor Browser. The article actually does a pretty good job of laying out the pros and cons of each, so it’s a little disappointing that the title is so click-baity and oversimplifying.
It’s cool that they have that info (hadn’t noticed it before), though it only looks at the front end code, there is no way to check for any malicious code on the back end. At the very least, logging the IP addresses that use the search engine is trivial without any changes to the front end. Actually correlating search queries to IPs would probably be harder since the query isn’t in the URLs, but maybe not that much harder, I’m not sure.
There’s no such thing as “couldn’t log” when you’re talking about an open source project. The source code can always be modified. Even if something is open-source, you’re always trusting the one hosting it with your data.
As you’ve said, the major issue with SearX and other open source and self-hostable options is that they don’t have their own crawlers and self-hosting means giving your IP to the big tech search engines you’re pulling results from. Tor or other proxies are always an option to prevent this but they make it more likely that your search requests from Google, etc. will be blocked. For centralized search engines with better-than-average privacy policies and their own crawlers, Brave Search probably is the best option at the moment in terms of returning relevant results.
That said, I’m eagerly awaiting for an open-source, self-hostable search engine with its own crawler. We shouldn’t be satisfied with the current lackluster options.
DDG censors things based on politics because Bing (where it gets its search results) does. And Google also censors results based on politics so I’m not sure how SP is a step up in that department. That being said, Google’s results tend to be more relevant to the search query than Bing’s, which is why SP’s results are often more relevant than DDG’s.
I would disagree. I understand the issues people have with Cloudflare and how their man-in-the-middle as a service business model compromises privacy and internet decentralization in general, but there’s just no comparison to Google, whose business model is to build personalized advertising profiles for all of their users.
It’s better for privacy but has other trade-offs. It’s slower than most VPNs and often blocked by hosts. I have nothing against Tor, but each have their own use cases.
I agree with most of the suggestions here, but I’m not sure why Telegram, a proprietary application that is not E2EE by default (and whose encryption is their own standard anyway) is touted as a privacy-friendly chat app alternative.