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May 25, 2010

Google implements encrypted search

by Darren Allan

Google has launched a secure and encrypted version of its search engine.

You can reach Google SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) simply by adding an “s” on to the end of the “http” at the start of the site’s URL: https://www.google.com

Only the .com site is available right now, although a localised .co.uk version is expected soon enough.

Searching via Google SSL is no different to the normal site, except the search term and data pinging between you and the Google servers is encrypted the whole way.

No one can snoop at what you’re searching for – if a third party was to intercept the data, they wouldn’t have a clue what it was all about.

Or that’s the theory, although the system isn’t completely bullet-proof. An ISP, for example, might not be able to read your search query, but could still be able to see the site you visit if you click on a link that isn’t also “https”.

The only other downside to the system is that due to the encryption process, returning search results will obviously be a touch slower than vanilla Google.

Currently the SSL site is in beta, and just plain old Google search is available, there’s no support for Google Images or Maps.

So if you’re looking for directions to the local sex shop, hackers will still be able to pin-point your destination and laugh at you.

A Google spokesman said: “We think users will appreciate this new option for searching. It’s a helpful addition to users’ online privacy and security, and we’ll continue to add encryption support for more search offerings.”

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1 Comment »
  1. “It’s a helpful addition to users’ online privacy and security”

    Lol! Says Google, the world’s largest personal data-mining company!

    Comment by Brian Turner — May 25, 2010 @ 9:34 am

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