What your web history says about you and why you should delete it

What your web history says about you and why you should delete it

Your web history says a lot about who are – what you like, where you work, what you search. Are those really things you want people to see? If not, read on!

You may not realize it, but there is a lot of personal data hidden in your web history. You probably know by now that privacy is a must these days.

Beyond the websites you visit, all of the searches you enter in toolbars or directly on search engines end up saved either by the search engine or your computer.

If you use your computer for work or on a public network, your information could be compromised. Where you work, what you buy, your bank accounts, and what you search for can all be found on your computer.

Sloppy browsing can also hog your data on mobile and networked devices.

If you don’t clear your web history on a daily basis, here are 5 ways to make sure you don’t leave a trace of private information behind on the web.

Find Your Browser History

Thankfully clearing your history has become a common enough practice that most browsers have a history button in the toolbar.

In Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, and Firefox, type CTRL + H to see your history. You can see several weeks back and organize the data.

If you use Google Chrome on a mobile device and have integrated your accounts, you’ll be able to deal with your history from this central location.

Delete Your Browser History

Regular history deletion is a cornerstone of safe browsing practices.

Once you’ve found your history, you should be able to select an option to delete your browsing history. In several browsers, you will also be able to delete your saved passwords and other data.

If you are sharing your computer or giving it to someone else, be sure that you delete all of your passwords. Do this in every browser so that your accounts remain secure.

Clear Your Browser Address Bar

Deleting your browser history won’t clear your address bar. To ensure you clear out all the URLs you’ve visited, there is a different approach for different browsers

In Safari, find the History button in the toolbar. To delete all the associated data with browsing, select Clear History.

In Firefox, you need a different approach. Once you’ve gotten to the History menu, you can specifically clear Form & Search History. You need to do this on top of clearing Browsing & Download History.

In Internet Explorer, you have to find Tools > Delete Browsing History > Delete All. It’s important to be thorough and double check after you’ve cleared.

Clear Your Google Toolbar

If you’ve installed a Google Toolbar, be sure you clear this history.

First, click the arrow on the right side of the Toolbar’s search box. Then when you see text link to Clear History, click to delete your previous history.

Browsers that use different search engines will have similar setups. Close and reopen your browser to double check your work.

Clear Your Google Searches

Once you’ve cleared via the steps mentioned above for your browser, you’ll have cleared your Google searches.

You’ll want to next turn off Query Suggestions through the Google Preferences page. Select Do Not Provide Query Suggestions. You’ll be prompted to save. After you select that, restart your browser.

Protect Yourself With Clean Web History

Clearing out your web history should be a regular practice of using the internet. Just like changing your oil on a car, it can keep from any unsightly data buildup and solve lots of issues encountered while browsing.

Maintain a clean web history and you’ll maintain a safe presence on the internet, free of hacks and compromised data breaches. For more information on how to keep browsing smoothly, contact us.

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