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Verizon Media Launches Privacy-Focused OneSearch

January 27, 2020 Carolyn Harding

The internet has welcomed a brand new search engine – courtesy of Verizon Media – which promises to separate itself from other leaders in the search market by keeping users' privacy top of mind.

Verizon Media Introduces OneSearch

OneSearch is the latest member added to the Verizon Media family, which currently serves 900 million people each month and includes multiple online properties, such as HuffPost, TechCrunch and Yahoo. Promising to offer unbiased, organic and unfiltered search results, OneSearch relies on Microsoft’s Bing search engine, and its contextual ads will be served by Microsoft Advertising (under the partnership between Verizon Media and Microsoft Advertising). 

The OneSearch interface is clean and fairly straightforward, however, at its core, OneSearch promises to show the same search results to every user. According to Verizon Media, “OneSearch doesn’t use your search habits or profile data to filter or optimize search results. OneSearch gives you a wider, deeper range of results without bias.”

OneSearch Differentiates Itself From Competitors

Verizon Media’s OneSearch has taken significant steps to separate itself from the pack. Not only has the company created the ability for businesses to integrate OneSearch with their existing privacy and security products, but the search engine also avoids any use of cookie tracking, retargeting or personal profiling. Essentially, businesses don’t have the opportunity to advertise to consumers based on their previous search histories.

“OneSearch doesn’t track, store or share personal or search data with advertisers, giving users greater control of their personal information in a search context,” Verizon Media stated. “Businesses with an interest in security can partner with Verizon Media to integrate OneSearch into their privacy and security products, giving their customers another measure of control.”

Another unique feature from OneSearch is the “advanced privacy mode,” created to provide extra privacy protection for situations where multiple people are using the same device, or if search results links are being shared. According to Search Engine Land, “The search engine encrypts search terms entered by the user and builds the search URL using those encrypted search terms.” After one hour, the encryption key will expire in an effort to stop third-party sites from tapping into a user’s search history. While the advanced privacy mode is automatically enabled, it must be turned on in order to encrypt search terms and expire search history links.

The final standout feature from OneSearch goes by the name of “Trending Now.” “Trending Now uses search logs to determine if there are entities (people, places or things) for which searches have been peaking recently,” shared a Verizon Media Spokesperson. “We compare the number of searches for that entity within a short, recent, period of time with the average baseline for that entity over an extended period of time. A pool of those that are showing the most dramatic uplift are selected, and we rotate through that pool.”

Tapping Into The Data Privacy Conversation

In recent years, there has been a heightened awareness surrounding user privacy and tracking. Big name companies like FacebookGoogle and Amazon are continuously seeking information from users in order to increase revenue, while consumers are simultaneously becoming more and more aware and knowledgeable about data privacy. With recent trends in mind, OneSearch has positioned itself as the big name solution for privacy-oriented users.

“We deeply believe in consumer trust and choice, both for our user community and our partners,” said Michael Albers, Verizon Media’s Head of Consumer Product. “In support of our commitment to trust and transparency, we are excited to launch OneSearch, an innovative new online search experience built for privacy-minded searchers.” While OneSearch doesn’t sell data directly to advertisers, the search engine does rely heavily on advertising in order to keep its service free.

In order for OneSearch to separate itself from trailblazers like DuckDuckGo – a fellow privacy-focused search engine which has seen drastic growth throughout the past few years – the newest search engine from Verizon Media will need to capitalize on four advantages it has at its fingertips: brand awareness and trust, the growing amount of consumers seeking privacy-focused options, the various affiliates Verizon Media has access to and Verizon’s multitude of audiences and niches to help create a widespread audience. OneSearch has the potential to pop up inside various online entities in the future and cement itself as a top, trusted leader in the search engine market.

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About the Author

Carolyn Harding

Carolyn Harding is an Associate Manager of Communications at Digital Media Solutions (DMS), the fastest-growing independent digital performance marketing company. DMS helps its clients accelerate growth by deploying diversified and data-driven customer acquisition solutions that deliver scalable, sustainable and measurable marketing results. DMS performance marketing solutions connect the right consumers with the right offers at the right time to achieve the marketing objectives of our clients. DMS is continually innovating to provide new and emerging media and technology solutions that minimize waste and maximize results across the most competitive industries. Since its inception, DMS has demonstrated incredible year-over-year growth which has earned recognition on the Inc. 5000 list in 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018.

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