The Spark of Genius Series highlights a unique feature of startups and is made possible by Microsoft BizSpark. If you would like to have your startup considered for inclusion, please see the details here.
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Quick Pitch: Search the web anonymously
Genius Idea: Stealth is a search engine that does not store cookies, track IP addresses or save search terms.
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Your internet footprint can be minimized with a new stealthy search.
The Stealth search engine allows users to search the Internet without being trailed by cookies and other tracking devices. The startup is all about protecting privacy.
Jon Cook, the founder of the startup, was inspired by the intermingling of Google's social media and search engine. Google's updated privacy terms nudged Cook to roll out a service that allows users to avoid being tracked online.
Stealth doesn't store cookies, track IP addresses or save browsing history like many of the top search engines such as Google and Yahoo do. Websites and a user's browser communicate and share information through cookies, which can pick up private data from users.
"One of the scary things about Google is they track everything you do even when you aren't on Google," Cook said. "I think people want real privacy and that is what Stealth offers."
Stealth works differently from other search engines. To secure private information, Cook said, Stealth reroutes clicks to a website so private data -- such as a user's IP address -- are not passed to the site. Stealth uses secure encryption to prevent sharing search terms with sites visited via Stealth's search.
Stealth's home page is simple -- there's a single search bar with search, news, photos and video options listed below the search button. Search results are revealed on a single page with a "More" button at the bottom to expand results. Cook said he created his own algorithm for his search engine and he lists reasons to switch search engines.
"I entered the search engine marketplace because there's a huge opportunity," he said. "Stealth search results are definitely different, but better."
Stealth currently does not have advertising or any other source of revenue or funding. In the future, users may see ads on Stealth, but the ads won't be targeted based on Internet surfing habits.
Cook has been involved with other startups in the past. The Las Vegas programmer was a co-founder of Veribu, a video chatting website overshadowed by Skype and Google Hangout, before he started working on Stealth a few months ago.
Stealth is so stealthy that it is nearly unsearchable on Google search. Go to usestealth.com to get your Stealth on.
Will you try out this new search engine? Tell is in the comments below.
Series Supported by Microsoft BizSpark
The Spark of Genius Series highlights a unique feature of startups and is made possible by Microsoft BizSpark, a startup program that gives you three-year access to the latest Microsoft development tools, as well as connecting you to a nationwide network of investors and incubators. There are no upfront costs, so if your business is privately owned, less than three years old, and generates less than U.S.$1 million in annual revenue, you can sign up today.
This story originally published on Mashable here.