System1 is a adtech company earning their money with data collection. They have already bought other smaller search engines. Privacy One Group Ltd couldn't be found anywhere. Startpage was consequently delisted on privacytools.io .Privacy One Group Ltd has invested in Startpage.com ... Privacy One Group is a separate operating unit of System1, focused entirely on user privacy.
There has been no proof that startpage in fact changed anything about the way they handle user data. I think delisting startpage at the moment blows things out of proportion considering the alternatives. Duckduckgo is certainly no alternative because it's US-based and we don't know what exactly they do either. Qwant might be considered - did anybody test it? I didn't because it doesn't have the filters (date) I need.
The other listed alternative Searx is certainly the best search option but not for everyone. Searx instances (listed here: https://github.com/asciimoo/searx/wiki/Searx-instances) do meta search and occasionally stop working - not surprisingly they get blocked by the search engines they use or the (privately operated) servers go down entirely or they become unusable for other reasons. And using a search engine named https://suche.honigdachse.de/ might look strange for some - although I can recommend that one (just don't ask me what "Honigdachse" are - probably just an available domain name). I'm using https://search.privacytools.io/ and at the moment it's fine ... but it might not stay fine and thus it can't be our default. And also privacytools.io tracks users with a self hosted matomo script but it gets filtered with uBlock origin anyway (they are open about other ways to disable it too)..