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DuckDuckGo launches a new subscription to bundle VPN and identity theft protection | TechCrunch

DuckDuckGo launches a new subscription to bundle VPN and identity theft protection | TechCrunch

Privacy-focused consumer tech company DuckDuckGo started Thursday a new Privacy Pro subscription that bundles a VPN service, personal information removal, and identity theft recovery.

The plan, which costs $9.99 per month or $99 per year, is currently only available to people in the U.S. It's the company's first move toward a subscription service built into the DuckDuckGo browser.

DuckDuckGo has been profitable since 2014, but until now has relied on ad revenue. A subscription service opens up a new way for a company to make money.

Image credit: DuckDuckGo

A VPN uses the open source WireGuard protocol to protect your identity when you visit various sites on the web. All DNS queries are also routed through DuckDuckGo's own DNS resolvers, so Internet Service Providers (ISPs) can't see your browsing history, the company said.

With the Personal Information Removal Service, DuckDuckGo scans. Dozens of data broker sites To find details like your name and address. If the Service finds your details on any of these sites, it requests removal and handles email correspondence with them.

The company says it uses Removaly, a startup DuckDuckGo acquired in 2022, for this feature. (At the time, Removaly's founder, Kyle Krzeski, Posted on X. (that a private company acquired the startup without naming it.)

The third feature of DuckDuckGo's Privacy Pro plan is identity theft recovery, where an advisor will help you recover your identity around the clock. This includes financial damages, correcting credit reports by freezing the report until identity is restored, and replacing and revoking items such as driver's licenses, bank cards, and passports. The recovery agent will work with you, complete all formalities, and follow up with various companies, the company said.

DDGID theft

Image credit: DuckDuckGo

DuckDuckGo says that to ensure user privacy, it keeps no logs of users' VPN activity, stores data provided when removing personal information on a local device, and when users sign up for the Privacy Pro service. Upon signing up, the company assigns a random ID. '

Earlier this year, DuckDuckGo added cross-device sync. Passwords and bookmarks For easy access to this information.

earlier this year, Court filings in US Department of Justice v. Google revealed that DuckDuckGo accounted for only 2.5% of general search queries in the US in 2021 and between 0.5% and 2.5% in Europe in 2023.

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