Brave Launches Its Own Privacy-Focused Search Engine
The Company Aims to Bring an Alternative for Users to Find the Information They Want on the Web Without Giving Up Their Personal Data.
Brave, a free and open-source web browser based on Chromium, blocks website ads and cookies and gives users a way to send tokens in the form of tokens to registered websites and content creators.
The pro-privacy company has recently launched its own search engine. Brave Search is currently in beta and promises to not track or profile its users based on their queries.
The search engine uses its own index for results, and when it doesn’t have enough results for a particular query, it will revert to returning results from Bing. According to InputMag, the search results page will show the percentage of results coming from Brave’s index versus Bing. As Brave crawls more of the web, it will rely less on third-party results.
Brave Search beta is based on an independent index, the first of its kind. However, for some queries, Brave can anonymously check our search results against third-party results, and mix them on the results page. This mixing is a means-to-an-end toward 100% independence. For full transparency and to measure Brave’s progress toward that goal, Brave provides a “Results independence” metric. This anonymous calculation shows the % of search results that come from Brave versus these third parties. Note that no matter the independence metric, your privacy will always be 100%.
At first glance, Brave Search seems to be a search engine of full status, with features similar to Google, like knowledge cards that display relevant information directly on the results page. It doesn’t feature any ads, and the company hasn’t indicated how it will make money from the product.
We’re currently thinking through different search experiences to offer our users. Some want a premium, ad-free search experience. Others want a free, ad-supported model. We think choice is best. Brave Ads with rewards is definitely possible, once we’re ready to take on the challenge of privacy-protected search ads.
The browser blocks online ads by default, but the company sells advertisements that users can enable in exchange for receiving small amounts of its cryptocurrency called BAT.
Nevertheless, Brave and other privacy-focused companies rejected Google’s call to implement FLoC in their own browsers.
Brave strongly believes that FLoC technology doesn’t protect privacy and it certainly isn’t beneficial to users. The company wants Google to stop tracking user behavior. They say creating groups to protect users is just fluff, as tracking still continues in the new FLoC system.
Google has been moving to make its browser more privacy-friendly by blocking third-party tracking cookies, but the company itself still tracks users closely to support its advertising business.