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How to turn on private browsing in Chrome, Safari, Firefox and Edge

If you’re looking visit websites without worrying about your computer saving your search history, you’ll want to switch to private browsing. Here’s how to do it. 

Most browsers have a private browsing function these days, allowing you to shop for birthday presents and stalk your ex on social media without your friends and family finding out. 

It’s important to note that just because you’re browsing in private, that doesn’t necessarily mean your data is hidden from everyone. 

Chrome’s Incognito mode, for example, will hide your browsing history from other people using your computer, but it won’t prevent your school, workplace, internet service provider or the websites you visit from tracking your activity. 

If you want more comprehensive protection, you’ll want to invest in a VPN. You can visit our guide to the best VPNs to see which services we recommend.

Read on to learn how to turn on private browsing in Chrome, Safari, Firefox and Microsoft Edge… 

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How to turn on private browsing in Google Chrome 

Google Chrome’s private browsing feature is called Incognito mode. Switching it on will prevent your browsing history, cookies, site data and any information you enter into forms from being saved to your device. 

Chrome Incognito

How to go Incognito in Google Chrome: 

  • Open Chrome 
  • Select the three dots to open the menu 
  • Choose ‘New Incognito window’ 

You can use the shortcut Crt + shift + n on Windows or Command + shift + n on Mac to open an Incognito window. 

How to turn on private browsing in Safari 

Apple has a private browsing feature of its own in its Safari browser. This feature prevents your Mac, iPhone or iPad from saving a record of your browsing history or sharing those websites with your other Apple devices. 

How to open a Private Browsing window in Safari:

  • Open Safari 
  • Select ‘File’ 
  • Select ‘New Private Window’ 

You can also toggle between Private Browsing and regular browsing on your iPhone by tapping the tabs icon, the number of tabs and then ‘Private’. 

How to turn on private browsing in Firefox 

Like Chrome, Firefox’s Private Browsing feature will automatically erase any passwords, cookies and history from your computer. 

Firefox also goes a step further by offering tracking protection to block websites and ads from attaching hidden trackers that collect your browsing info and weigh down your browsing speeds. 

Firefox private browsing

How to use Private Browsing in Firefox: 

  • Open Firefox 
  • Click on the three line menu 
  • Click ‘New Private Window’ 

You can also use the shortcut Ctrl + shift + p to open a Private Browsing window in Firefox. 

How to turn on private browsing in Microsoft Edge 

Microsoft’s Edge browser has its own private browsing mode called InPrivate. InPrivate will delete any browsing history, cookies and site data, along with passwords, addresses and form data when you close the window. 

Edge inprivate

How to open an InPrivate window in Microsoft Edge: 

  • Open Edge 
  • Click the three dot menu 
  • Select ‘New InPrivate window’ 

You can also access InPrivate from your Windows taskbar by right clicking the Edge logo and selecting ‘New InPrivate window’ from there.

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