SearchLock Frequently Asked Questions FAQ

What is SearchLock? 

SearchLock is a search engine and browser extension that helps you protect your privacy by preventing big search companies like Google, and Bing from profiling you based on your searches. Ads follow you everywhere after you search because these companies create a detailed profile about you based on your search history. Our privacy-enhancing search engine does NOT track you with cookies, does NOT profile you, and does NOT log anything that can identify you personally.

How does SearchLock keep my searches private? 

SearchLock has a number of privacy-enhancing features to help keep search engines from profiling you. First, SearchLock uses a patent-pending process to detect when your browser is about to send your search to a search engine that is known to track and profile its users. It then blocks your query from making it to them and re-routes it to SearchLock's privacy-enhanced search results page instead.

Second, when you use the SearchLock extension, your keystrokes are blocked from being tracked. Safari users should be aware that SearchLock is unable to prevent the logging of your keystrokes as you search the web due to the limitations in Safari's extension API. This may expose your search terms to your default search engine. However, you make turn of the logging of keystrokes by following these instructions. For users of our Firefox extension, the default search provider is changed to SearchLock. You can read more about SearchLock's privacy features here.

Does SearchLock use SSL? 

Yes, all traffic that travels between you and SearchLock's search service is SSL encrypted. This means that the connection between your browser and SearchLock's safe search results page as well as your search queries are encrypted. Our SSL implementation has an "A" rating with Qualys SSL Labs.

Additionally, SearchLock's SSL is implemented with perfect-forward secrecy which ensures that no one who might try to intercept your search queries will be able to.

Why should I use the Search browser extension together with the search engine? 

The SearchLock browser extension adds an extra layer of privacy protection that you wouldn't receive by just using SearchLock's privacy-friendly search engine alone. Usually, when you type your search into a browser, your keystroke is sent to a search engine such as Google so that it can return search suggestions. This may expose your search suggestion keystrokes to your default search engine.

SearchLock stops the logging and prevents your keystrokes from making it into the hands of companies that are known to profile you. Safari users should be aware that SearchLock's Safari extension is unable to prevent the logging of your keystrokes as you search the web due to the limitations in Safari's extension API. However, you make turn of the logging of keystrokes by following these instructions. Firefox users should note that our Firefox extension changes the default search provider to SearchLock in order to provide privacy-friendly search suggestions.

Does SearchLock have any way to discover my search history? 

No. Since we don't collect information about you or develop a profile to track you, there is no way for us to discover your search personal search history.

How does SearchLock prevent search engines from profiling me? 

The SearchLock extension uses patent-pending technology to determine whether your search is headed toward a search engine that tracks and profiles you, then redirects your search to our privacy-enhanced search engine which does not.

How can I temporarily disable SearchLock? 

You can disable SearchLock for a single search by scrolling to the bottom of the page and finding the links to other search engines where it says "Try this search on:."

How do I uninstall SearchLock? 

You can uninstall the SearchLock browser extension by following these instructions. You can uninstall it the same way you would uninstall any browser extension for the browser you are using.

Does SearchLock prevent other sites from tracking me? 

SearchLock's purpose is to keep your searches from being used to profile you. Once you leave the search results, we cannot ensure you that you will not be tracked. If you would like to ensure a higher level of anonymity, we recommend using a VPN service.