Wednesday 06 November, 2013

How Private is In Private Browsing?

Do you want to surf the internet without leaving a trail? Are there sites you want to see that you don’t want appearing in the browser’s history?

Although nothing is ever totally private online, InPrivate Browsing is an option that gives you a great deal more privacy. It’s a mode offered by Internet Explorer and other browsers have their own versions. If you surf using In Private Browsing, no one can see where you’ve been. It’s a tool that has grown popular recently.

How Private Browsing Works

While surfing the web on In Private Browsing mode, your browser doesn’t save the history of the sites you’ve visited. They’re not recorded. If someone checks the history afterward, they won’t see the sites you’ve visited.

For the most part, In Private Browsing doesn’t accept cookies. It sometimes accepts cookies when they’re needed to make a website work, but the cookies are erased as soon as the browsing session is finished.

In Private Browsing gets rid of download lists if you’ve downloaded something, although the downloaded files are still on your computer.

Why Use Porn Mode?

Private browsing has gotten nicknamed ‘porn mode,’ but this isn’t the only reason you might want a private browsing session. If you’re logging into a website on a shared computer, it offers an extra layer of protection. Some people use private sessions for Facebook or other social media where they don’t want others to see every page they’ve visited. Private mode prevents autofill form working on shared or public computers.

One of the great things about private sessions is that you can log in to two accounts simultaneously. If you have two Yahoo accounts, it’s impossible to do this usually. But private browsing allows you to log in to both. This is useful when testing or debugging sites as well.

Private Browsing Isn’t Totally Private

In Private Browsing is designed to keep your browsing session private if you’re using a shared computer. But don’t be fooled into a false sense of security. Although it prevents other users from seeing where you’ve been, it doesn’t stop the websites you visit from seeing your IP address. However, there are tools that allow you to surf the web with total anonymity, such as the encrypted network Tor and private proxy programs like KProxy and Anonymizer.

More importantly, it doesn’t prevent malware from attacking your computer. Some people mistakenly believe that it does, and this is a dangerous mistake to make. Your PC can still be infected by malware and InPrivate Browsing offers no protection whatsoever. You still need to run a security program to keep your computer safe.

In Private Browsing is for Internet Explorer and similar programs include Chrome’s Incognito mode and Private Browsing in Firefox and Safari. They all work in a similar fashion. While they’re designed to keep your browsing session secret, they’re not perfect. Some data is still saved from the sites you visit, so keep this in mind.

Bob Steele

Bob Steele

Bob Steele is an entrepreneur, software developer, marketer, and author living in the Denver metropolitan area. He’s an avid outdoorsman who loves skiing, hiking, fishing, boating, and just plain having fun. His interests include games, space, technology, physics, cooking (well eating actually), economics, business, internationalism, and team sports. With over thirty years of professional consulting experience, Bob has been exposed to many diverse business models and has gained a sensible approach to life. Bob’s company, WaveCentric is focused on commerce, marketing, and entertainment related products.

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