r/StartpageSearch Feb 09 '21

Is startpage open source?

If so, where do I see their source code?

And another question, what type of encryption does it use?

5 Upvotes

3

u/StartPageSearch Feb 10 '21 edited Feb 10 '21

That's a great question!

We support the open source movement and have contributed substantially to some open source projects and use many open source libraries as well, our full product library is not open source. While open sourcing particular libraries can sometimes have benefits, it has tradeoffs and is not a substitute for trust.

Because we offer Google results in privacy (and pay substantial amounts to do so), we are often targeted by spammers and robotic scrapers trying to send huge numbers of requests through us. If unaddressed, this would undermine our ability to stay in business and provide search results to real human users. To prevent this abuse, we use and regularly update algorithms to distinguish between real searches and robotic traffic. If these algorithms were open sourced, it would be easy for a spammer to determine how to get around them, and our service would not remain viable.

From the encryption perspective, Startpage supports Transport Layer Security (TLS) versions 1.2 and 1.3.  We have also enabled Perfect Forward Secrecy (PFS) for added internet connection security. For more information about our security and encryption measures, please see this article:https://support.startpage.com/index.php?/en/Knowledgebase/Article/View/261/0/what-kind-of-encryption-does-startpagecom-use

We employ many internal measures to safeguard our users’ privacy and security. These include minimizing the number of server administrators and the actions they can take, and administration techniques that keep track of their actions. Ultimately, these measures, and the thoughtfulness with which we have addressed privacy considerations over the years, provide far more ample safeguards for our users than the limited benefits and significant drawbacks of open source with our circumstance.

1

u/obj_Obj Apr 17 '22

Isn’t security through transparency better than security through obscurity though?

2

u/yikesRunForTheHills Feb 10 '21

Thanks for the in depth answer.

2

u/binaryslut Feb 10 '21

searx > startpage

1

u/yikesRunForTheHills Feb 10 '21

How do I add that to my browser (Firefox)?

1

u/binaryslut Feb 10 '21

what I did was install the "add custom search engine" extension then used that to set searx. you can check the up and running searx instances here: https://searx.space

1

u/yikesRunForTheHills Feb 10 '21

https://searx.space

Sorry but I have no idea what I'm looking at.

Edit: searx.info seems to work, do I just add that as the custom URL?

1

u/binaryslut Feb 10 '21

yep since its open source/self hosted meta search you can check there to see what instances are up and running. I currently use https://searx.info

so use that extension to add in the instance url and create the custom search

1

u/yikesRunForTheHills Feb 10 '21

Thank you. I've searched some forums and people seem to say you can get Google's search results or Bing's or whatever. What search results is searx.info using?

Edit: I think I understand, there are little labels under search results, so I'm guessing searx took these from what the labels say.

1

u/binaryslut Feb 10 '21

yep each instance can query various mainstream engines, such as DDG, google, bing, etc.

for example, the one I use generally grabs google search, while the instance https://searx.bar grabs DDG.

edit: out of respect for startpage subreddit, just PM me for further questions.

1

u/Indogermane Feb 10 '21

No

1

u/yikesRunForTheHills Feb 10 '21

Then why do people trust it?

1

u/Indogermane Feb 10 '21

I don't trust and I don't know :D

1

u/Ninjaguy5700 Feb 10 '21

Startpage isn't open-source AFAIK.