Cover your tracks!
Are you worried someone can see your browsing history?
6 questions to ask yourself to ensure you’re staying safe online.
This information is for guidance only and may not completely cover your tracks.
1. Am I in a safe place?
When you’re using the internet, it’s important to consider your environment and the people around you. If you want your session to remain private, ensure there is no one around you that can see what you are doing.
2. Is my network secure?
When you use your Wi-Fi at home, you have control over who else can access your network with the use of a strong Wi-Fi password and a multitude of network settings, permission levels and other configurations to further scrutinize access. However when you are in public using a shared network, you are unable to control it’s network security, introducing a risk for other users to see what you see and send online.
To avoid risks when browsing online with public Wi-Fi, it’s recommended to:
- Consider using a VPN to encrypt your data
- Connect to the internet via your mobile data instead
3. Am I using a private browser?
If you are using a device which is shared with other users, we recommend using your internet browser in private or incognito mode. This will hide your internet history, preventing any other users on the device from viewing what pages you’ve visited (including any words you have searched).
The process for doing this will differ depending on the browser you are using (Chrome, Safari, Edge etc), however should be accessible within the browser settings towards the top of the screen.
4. Have I stored my login credentials for future use?
When you enter your login credentials on a website, you’ll often be prompted by your browser to save your details for faster future logins. If you are using a shared device, we recommend against storing your login credentials online as it may allow other users on the device to log in to your accounts. If you accidently store your website login credentials, you can remove these from memory within your browser’s settings.
You can also turn off this feature within your browser, so that you stop receiving prompts to save your login credentials. The process for each of these will differ depending on the application you are using (eg. Chrome, Firefox, Safari), however these settings are usually found by accessing the browser settings found towards the top of the screen.
5. Have I logged out of all online accounts?
If you are using a shared device, it is strongly recommended to log out of any online accounts when you’ve finished your session to avoid others on the same device from accessing your accounts. Simply closing the browser or entering a new web address may not sign you out of your accounts, so make sure that you click ‘sign out’ for each account you are using
6. Have I deleted my browser history, cookies and cache?
By default, internet browsers will save copies of the websites you visit, files and images from these websites, and any words that you searched on these websites. You can prevent this from occuring by using ‘private’ or ‘incognito’ mode as suggested in step 3 - however if you have not used a private browsing mode, you can still delete this information from memory by accessing your browser settings and clearing your browser history, cookies and cache.
7. Have I closed my browser window?
To ensure that you’ve logged out properly and your browser history is cleared, we recommend that you close your browser window once you’ve completed your online session. This means ensuring that your browser window is not minimised or left open.