Weird/Spooky results on DuckDuckGo

Since a couple days I've been getting some weird results while searching for some obscure stuff on DuckDuckGo (a.k.a Bing Front-end), it has happened 2 times now that a completely unrelated search gives the wikipedia page of my exact city, and another time it showed a seemingly local website because it had my city name in it!

Well, there's really only two ways (that I know of) that you can get the city from some random person on the internet (without their consent): Correlation or IP.

Correlation I don't even need to talk about. That would require a huge effort and may as well be impossible. Next.

So we are left with IP, which so conveniently gives a rather close location of where you are. DuckDuckGo says they "don't pass unique identifiers to partners", quoting from the help page:

Partners and Privacy: As per our strict privacy policy, we never share any personal information with any of our partners that could lead to the creation of search histories. When we send a request to a partner for information used in search results, the transfer of information is proxied through our servers so it stays anonymous. That means our partners see those requests as though they came from us instead of our users, and no unique identifiers are passed in that process (e.g., your IP address). That way, we can work with partners to produce relevant search result pages, while keeping you anonymous to them (and us!).

Which, given my case, could either be a big lie, a play on words, or there's something going on in their servers. My IP is clearly being used by DuckDuckGo or Bing because it's literally the only viable way to show me those results!

In Conclusion

Whether they are lying or not is up to speculation, in a quick DuckDuckGo search i haven't seen anybody complain about this same thing happening, but i'll keep observing.

Also, funny stuff: I tried searching for the same word that gave me the wikipedia page and instead got an FBI page! Look (i'm not joking, it did happen): duckduckgo-fbi-result.png

Also 2, quick note about the last site update: I implemented small screen layouts, since looking at that 60% width on a small screen was making me sick, and i think it came out to be pretty cool too.

It's still happening

So I decided to search it again, maybe to see if it was just a bug. Searched the same word, scrolling a few results down I see the same Wikipedia page of my city, then scrolling a few more, I see a weather prevision of my city, and from then on only the actually related results keep appearing and repeating. Really weird stuff going on.

I think they fixed it

I searched the word in two different days and the results are fine now. Seems like it finally got fixed.

But who knows that it's not the FBI trying to hide themselves?

You kidding me, DuckDuckGo?

IT'S STILL GODDAMN HAPPENING, literally a few hours/days after I pushed the last update to this it started happening again, and now it was a huge wave, in many searches with many results showing names related to areas around the place i live and even direct wikipedia articles about them (again, in completely unrelated searches, i wasn't even using the country search feature).

I'm not the only one

Someone told me it's happening with them as well!

This is weird. Is it a bug? Is it a blind experiment? Impossible to know. I tried using the "Share Feedback" button, as they say to do, but it's still not fixed. I just found their contact emails so gonna try that.

I also find that the search results in general have been turning into absolute chaos recently, sometimes showing 5 shitty results when other engines can easily find much better stuff, sometimes not showing something that i explicitly searched for, sometimes showing filler results, repeating the same result forever, showing a million spam sites... Sometimes not displaying anything when I put it to search in a specific language. Why?

They say hope is the last to dye

It's been 2 weeks since i emailed open@duckduckgo.com for answers. No response. I might send another email if it gets to 1 month.

I don't know if they received my email even. After I sent it I noticed a decrease in the IP spam but I'm still getting some results showing my localization.

Last time I also said about the search results being shit and at least that seems to be happening on a broad scale: Repeating Results after hitting the More Results button, Anyone else finding DDG search results extremely limited?, Duplicated results, Suspicious & duplicated results