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DuckDuckGo Stumps Up Cash For Open Source Projects

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelance and long standing contributor to TechWeek Europe

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Anonymous Internet search engine DuckDuckGo announces funding awards for worthy open source projects

Anonymous Internet search engine DuckDuckGo is giving $25,000 (£17,267) to nine separate open source projects, handing over $225,000 (£155,000) to help web users recover their privacy.

DuckDuckGo does not track users search queries and in 2015 it performed three billion searches.Unlike Google, it does not gather information about you in order to sell to advertisers, but instead displays generic adverts.

Funding Awards

Do not track footprintThe projects that DuckDuckGo is funding this year includes SecureDrop, an open-source whistleblower submission system.

Freenet Project meanwhile has also been granted a funding slice as it intends to “re-establish freedom of speech on the internet” via its peer-to-peer network offering censorship-resistant communication.

Another chunk of the money goes to the OpenBSD Foundation and the CrypTech project has also gained funding. This latter project is developing an “open-source hardware cryptographic engine design (i.e. the hardware that cryptographic software runs on).

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Other funding goes to the Tor Project and the Fight for the Future campaign by Save Security. This campaign looks to educate the public about the importance of encryption.

The final three projects to get $25,000 each are the Open Source Technology Innovation Fund (“to connect open-source security projects with much-needed funding and logistical support); LEAP (LEAP Encryption Access Project) from RiseUp Labs (communication tools); and GPGMail, an extension for Apple Mail that provides public key email encryption and signing.

“We’re extremely proud to support each of these projects in their work towards increased trust for all internet users, not to mention a stronger global open source community,” said DuckDuckGo. “We continue to be part of that community with our open source repositories and DuckDuckHack, our community of contributors.”

Do No Track

The “do not track” campaign to stop the likes of Google from tracking the web browsing habits of people was bolstered last year when the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) and a number of other groups (including DuckDuckGo) created a stronger “Do Not Track” (DNT) setting for Web browsing.

And it seems that a portion of web users are becoming increasingly tried of having their web searches tracked.

Last year for example, Symantec research found that one in three people had provided false information online in order to safeguard privacy.

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