Is Bing more private than Google about your searches?

A comment made by Google CEO Eric Schmidt has brought the dominant search engine some negative press, and has some eyes in high places turning toward Microsoft's "decision engine," Bing.

In an appearance on CNBC, Schmidt said the following:

"If you have something that you don't want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn't be doing it in the first place. If you really need that kind of privacy, the reality is that search engines — including Google — do retain this information for some time and it's important, for example, that we are all subject in the United States to the Patriot Act and it is possible that all that information could be made available to the authorities."

Schmidt's remark is vague, and has allowed a variety of interpretations. Name-checking the Patriot Act is generally not a good way to assure folks worried about privacy, but is Schmidt talking casually about what the authorities demand of search engines, or does Google not have the user's back when it comes to privacy?

Asa Dotzler, Mozilla's director of community development, has a problem with more than just Schmidt's comment. He's got a problem with Google itself. Click Continue to see what he's got to say.

From Maximum PC:

Dotzler maintains that Microsoft, the equally imposing tech behemoth that it is, has a better privacy policy than Google. Microsoft doesn't tightly 'connect-the-dots', relating user searches to such things as their email or online app use, and it stores data for a shorter period of time than Google. It's not ideal, but its better than what Google offers.

Privacy is obviously important, and that just sounds like two crummy options. I'd like to think that Google wouldn't oust my, well, little obsession. More than likely all of our day-to-day browsing will stay the same, with the "you don't want anyone to know" that Schmidt was talking about meaning something more like "something you shouldn't be doing."

Via Maximum PC