As soon as we hear the word incognito, instantly, the thought of private browsing crosses our mind. But that’s not completely true. Incognito mode doesn’t truly hide your activity online.
Whatever the name may be–incognito, private browsing, or privacy mode. Browser features like these, no matter how promising they sound, can be treacherous. This is because private browsing was introduced to wipe off only the local traces of where and what you’ve been searching for.
At maximum capability, these modes can hide what sites you’re visiting from the device and browsing history, save cookies that connect to the site you’ve been to and log in to sites or remember your credentials. But your footprints across the web are still visible to your internet service providers, your employers who control the network, or your school authorities, if you’re a student, and not to forget target marketers, who follow you like a spy.
For a better experience, a lot of internet service providers have added features like anti-trackers, which block various chunks that advertisers and websites use to track to serve related advertisements.
These features are good to go if you want to protect your browsing history from the browser application and the computer it’s on. Let’s understand how to browse privately on the internet.
Although incognito can mean the private mode of any browser, Google gets the credit to grab the name back in 2008, months after chrome was introduced.
Before we move forward, let’s understand that you can also delete google searches, and the function will be similar to that of a private mode in Google Chrome. This is because the incognito mode never removes your web footprints; it just hides them from the browser as well the device. A little search on how to delete google searches will help you get the right learning material online.
To activate the incognito mode, all you need to do is press Ctrl + Shift + N (Windows) or Command + Shift + N (macOS) on your keyboard on Google Chrome. Alternatively, you may click the three dots available on the top right corner of Google Chrome and select New Incognito Window from the drop-down menu.
Moreover, any link can be directly opened in the incognito window by right-clicking the link and selecting Open Link in Incognito Window from the resulting options.
To close the incognito tab, close it as you would close a regular window by clicking the cross from the top right corner of the screen in the window or the red dot in the upper left corner in macOS.
The name of its browser is InPrivate, a borrowed name from Internet Explorer.
To browse privately on Microsoft Edge, use the same keyboard combination, so press Ctrl + Shift + N (Windows) and Command + Shift + N (macOS). Another way to open InPrivate mode is to click on the three dots at the top and choose New InPrivate Window from the drop-down.
Microsoft Edge alerts that you’re browsing in InPrivate mode by making the oval blue on the top right corner in the full-black screen to ensure users know they’re browsing in a private mode.
Furthermore, you can open a new link in the InPrivate mode by simply right-clicking the link and selecting Open the Link in InPrivate Mode. Similar to Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge also uses anti-tracking features to keep your browsing a private affair.
To close the InPrivate mode, click on the X from the top right corner on the screen, and for Mac, press the red dot from the top left corner.
Mozilla added its private browsing mode around six months later than Google in 2009 with Firefox 3.5.
To open a private browsing window on Firefox, just press Ctrl + Shift + P if you are using Windows or Command + Shift + P on macOS. You may also press on the three dots displayed on the top right corner and select New Private Window from the drop-down menu.
In Firefox, a private session is depicted by a purple mask to tell the user that he is in a private mode. Similar to other browsers, the private mode in Firefox hides what you do in the private mode from others who might be using your computer.
To open a link in the private mode, right-click on it and select Open Link in New Private Window. Firefox also works on Enhanced Tracking Protection; therefore, regardless of which of three modes: standard, strict, or custom, you work on, whatever can be hidden will be hidden.
Google may get all the credit for creating Incognito, but Apple was the first one to introduce private browsing in Safari in 2005. It is considered the fastest browser available so far; you can make it even better by deleting all cache files regularly from the computer.
To open a private mode in Safari, you can use Command + Shift + N, the same shortcut used for Google Chrome’s incognito window.
Like Mozilla Firefox, Safari also automatically launches additional privacy features. Safari’s Intelligent Tracking Protection (ITP) blocks all third-party cookies and other chunks that service providers can use to track users and advertise to them.
A link can be opened directly in a private window of Safari by right-clicking the link and selecting Open Link New in Private Window. Close a private browsing mode by tapping on the red dot from the left corner of the browser window.