Before you start, you have to understand exactly what you are going to do. When browsing the Internet, each page and item that you view is saved to your computer. This is an automatic mechanism that allows faster browsing the next time you visit these pages. Clearing browsing history may cause individual pages to load a bit slower, but you will save valuable space and protect your privacy. While clearing your browser history, you might want to clear additional browsing data as well. These include:
Browsing & Download History
Form & Search History
Cookies, Cache & Active Logins
Clearing browser history for: Firefox
Go to the ‘Tools’ menu and select ‘Clear recent history…’ A dialogue box will appear. Choose the time range to clear. This can be from 1 hour of browsing history of everything. If you want to clear individual browsing options, click on the little details arrow. This will reveal individual items such as ‘Search History, Active Logins, Cookies’ and so on. Make your individual choices, but ensure that browsing and search histories are selected for deletion. When you are finished, click on the ‘Clear Now’ button.
Clearing search history only
To do this, right click in the Firefox search menu box (at the top right corner of the window) then selects ‘Clear Search History’. You can do this after typing a search term that you don’t want to pop up again for anyone to see.
Removing individual website history
Select ‘History” menu at the top of the Firefox window. Select ‘Show All History’. This will open a window listing the URL data of all the websites you visited. From the list, select, right click and remove all the websites you want to get rid of. You can even use the search box in the right top corner to search for specific websites to delete.
Clearing browser history for: Internet Explorer
While in Internet Explorer, click the ‘Tools’ Menu at the top of the browser. Choose ‘Delete Browsing History’. A window will open with a list of browsing history options where you have the option to delete individual items or not. After making your selection, click on the ‘Delete’ button when you are through.
Clearing browser history for: Chrome
After opening Google Chrome, click the Chrome menu and select ‘Tools’. Then select ‘Clear Browsing Data’. This will open up a dialogue box and from here select the checkbox beside ‘Clear browsing history’. Select the timeframe of data that you want to delete and click ‘Clear Browsing Data’ when you are done. This option will remove all pre-fetched data, IP address history, Cached text, Browsing history and so on.
Removing individual website history
Click the Chrome menu again. Select ‘History’. Use your mouse to click the checkboxes of the individual website data you want to remove. Click ‘Remove Selected Items’ then select OK after the confirmation window appears.
There will be times when you cannot clear your browsing history for various reasons including; shutting down the PC in a rush, a power outage and hardware malfunction and so on. Here are some ways to browse safely and privately without having to clear browsing history all the time:
1. Browse privately – When visiting sites that you don’t want people to know about then use your browser’s private browsing window. To open a private window in most browsers uses the command: Ctrl+Shift+P
2. Tell your browser not to remember browsing or download history
3. Tell your browser not to make search suggestions or remember form and search data
4. Tell your browser to automatically clear browsing history, search and download history and cookies when you start or close the browser.
5. Change browser settings to always browse in private window (this might however look suspicious)
6. Do not bookmark websites you want to keep secret.
These are excellent ways to automate secret browsing making sure that there is no further hassle or worries to contend with. Be sure to follow the steps for clearing your browsing history first and then adjust individual settings for automatic browsing trace clean up. It is a good idea to avoid being too discrete. Avoid using private browsing when your partner is around and never clear all of your browsing history data. Doing this all the time is no different from clearing all call and text history from your mobile phone. Only clear historical data that might cause a problem. Learn to clean up after yourself to avoid revealing your secret affairs.