A big year of growth for privacy focused browsers



Written by


With the increasing reports of data breaches and online tracking, people are becoming more and more concerned about how their data is being used online. In 2021, 86% of the people said they feel a growing concern about their data privacy. A side effect of this has been the exponential growth of browsers that offer more privacy to users such as Brave and DuckDuckGo.

What sets these browsers apart? Brave and DuckDuckGo have implemented a number of features that provide a sense of safety and security when surfing the net, and have had some great success as a result.

Let’s take a closer look at them.


Offering extremely rapid browser switch times, elimination of unwanted ads and trackers as well as an independent super app is San Francisco-based browser Brave. Brave’s browser, available for both mobile and web, says it has doubled its number of MAUs for the fifth year in a row. According to the Airnow Data platform, this represents a growth from 24 million MAUs on December 31st, 2020, to over 50 million by the end of 2021. It also has over 15.5 million daily active users and sees 2.3 billion searches per year. In 2021, the browser added Brave Search, Brave Wallet, Brave Talk and, for iOS, Brave Playlist.

“Passing 50 million users is a tremendous milestone for our company. It is also a powerful confirmation of the global movement underway led by users seeking alternatives to the surveillance economy,” said Brendan Eich, CEO and co-founder of Brave.


Another leading privacy-focussed browser that has experienced snowballing success recently is DuckDuckGo, which recorded a search volume increase of 46.4% in 2021. By providing private searches, site encryption and more, DuckDuckGo has earned a staggering 34.6 billion total searches and a daily average of 100 million searches by the end of 2021.

While the use of these privacy-focused browsers is on the rise, Google is still very much the top dog, and will likely continue to be so for the foreseeable future. Google’s monopoly over the global search engine landscape is cemented by their mammoth 87.33% share in search engine traffic. However, while Google may remain the dominant engine, platforms like Yahoo have cause to look over their shoulder, with DuckDuckGo’s 2.53% share rapidly catching up to Yahoo, which has 3.3% of search traffic.

There is clearly an increasing awareness around the idea of browser security. With smaller privacy-focused search engines catching up with the likes of Bing and Yahoo, it’s perhaps only a matter of time before user privacy becomes a given feature across most engines across the world.