New Disconnect Tool Enables Private Searches Without Logging Out Of Online Accounts

Disconnect Logo_Oct2013Online security software provider Disconnect launched their latest search tool, Disconnect Search this week. According to the announcement, Disconnect Search allows users to perform private searches on sites like Google, Yahoo and Bing via their address bar or omnibox, “without having to change their behavior.”

Disconnect says their new tool routes search queries through the company’s servers, making it appear as if the queries are, “coming from Disconnect instead of a specific user’s computer.” Disconnect’s technology also prevents search engines from passing along keywords to the websites that are visited via search result pages, as well as encrypts all queries so that ISPs cannot view them. Disconnect says it does not log, “any keywords, personal information, or IP addresses.”

The company posted the following video to show how Disconnect Search works:

Click here to view the embedded video.

In the announcement, Disconnect CTO Patrick Jackson emphasized the lack of privacy online for everyone, including users who search while logged out of their online accounts. “Even if you never log into an account,” said Jackson, “Search engines and many websites typically save your searches and connect them to an IP address, which can allow companies to uniquely identify your computer.”

Disconnect co-founder Casey Oppenheim agreed searches are anything but private, claiming, “Search engines, and even websites and Internet service providers, can save your searches and connect them to your real name through your user accounts.”

Gary Price, Search Engine Land contributor and editor of Library Journal’s infoDOCKET, says he has been using Disconnect for several months. “The best thing about Disconnect,” said Price, “Is the visualization option to see how trackers and the like connect to each other.”