Private Browsing - What Are The Benefits?



It is not entirely possible to use the Internet without leaving a digital footprint behind. However, private browsing can offer a lot of protection and keep you relatively safe. Web browsers are equipped with private browsing capabilities, e.g., Internet Explorer has an 'InPrivate' mode for secure browsing, and Google Chrome has 'InCognito' mode for private sessions. 


With private browsing, you can keep your search data and other information protected. Private browsing alone cannot provide you complete protection against data theft, but it is an effective measure you must take. 

What Is Private Browsing?

Data related to every website you visit is stored in your Internet browser's history, cache, and cookies. The browser remembers the URLs of the websites you visit and files you download. Cookies track your activity on different sites to provide you a better and faster user experience. 

It's all fine if you use a private computer and your data does not contain any valuable information. However, if you use a public computer and you are concerned about your data getting stolen, or you are uncomfortable knowing that your digital footprint is trackable and don't want to leave any breadcrumbs behind then use Private browser. 

If you use the browser's private mode, all the information is stored until your session completes. Once you close your private session, you don't leave any trail behind, and none of your data remains stored on the system. 

How To Stay Safe Online?

i. Good Digital Habits

Don't download anything or click anywhere if you are not sure about the website. Avoid downloading pirated content and software as they are often loaded with spyware and other malicious software. 

Avoid using public Wi-Fi network if it offers unfettered access to the network. If you connect to a genuine public Wi-Fi network, avoid exposing sensitive data such as banking passwords and login information. 

ii. SSL Certified Websites


SSL certificate provides secure connection for the exchange of information between browser and server. Make sure that you are dealing with URL of the website begins with 'HTTPS' instead of 'HTTP.' A green padlock icon in the address bar confirms that the site is SSL certified with SSL certificate like Positive SSL certificate.


SSL stands for 'Secure Sockets Layer', and it provides encrypted link between web broser and server to handle sensitive information, such as customer names, phone numbers, account numbers, credit card numbers, and more.


iii. Keep Your System Guarded And Updated 


Developers use updates to fix any security vulnerabilities. That's why it is important to keep your system updated. A good anti-virus program will keep your system protected from most potential attacks. 

Benefits Of Browsing Internet Privately


·         Privacy


When you use a shared computer and browse the internet in private mode, the websites you visit will never appear in the search history, no matter how many times you visit a website.


·         Minimize History


Whether it’s your work computer or personal computer, having as little personal data stored as possible is the best way to protect your information. It reduces the risk of your data getting stolen, and it saves space on your disk as well.


·         Security


Any cookies generated during a private browsing session gets automatically deleted when you close the window. If you are concerned about your accounts' security while signing in on a shared computer, a private browsing session can help you with that. Even if you forget to sign out of your account, the sign-in cookie will be deleted when you close the browsing session. With the deletion of the cookie, your account will be automatically signed out, and nobody could log into your account maliciously.


·         Testing


If you want to open a website you are not so sure about, but still, you want to give it a try, private browsing is the way to go.


·         Multiple Sessions 


Cookies are not shared between the normal window and a private browsing window. You can login to the second account on the same website without first signing out from your first account. For instance, if you are signed in with your Google account, and your friend wants to check his Gmail account, a private browsing session is a way to go.


·         eCommerce Tracking


Many websites use your search data and cookies to bring deals according to your needs. For instance, airline websites have data about your previous search history if you tried to check the price of a ticket. From the user data, they can find out which customer is highly likely to purchase a ticket. Sometimes, they offer higher discounts to new customers. You can check the price of the ticket using a private browser session to make sure that you are paying the minimum amount on your tickets. 

Same way, if you want an e-commerce platform to list your prices without accessing your data, you can use a private session. 


How To Enhance Privacy Further?

You can use TOR browser and a VPN connection from a reliable provider for enhanced privacy. Your browsing will still not be completely private, but these options can improve your privacy further. 


How To Browse the Internet Privately?


Chrome's Incognito Mode

1.      You can click the Google Chrome's 'Control Google Chrome Button' in the top-right corner with three dots and select 'new Incognito Window' for private browsing.
2.      Alternatively, you can press Ctrl+Shift+N to launch a new Incognito window.
3.      While right-clicking a link, you will see an option to open link in Incognito window.

Firefox's Private Mode

1.      Click the control button in the upper right corner and click 'New Private Window'.
2.      Alternatively, you can also press Ctrl+Shift+P to launch a private window. 




Microsoft's Edge's InPrivate Mode

1.      Click the '...' button in the top-right corner of the window and select new 'InPrivate Window'.
2.      Alternatively, you can also press Ctrl+Shift+P or Ctrl+Shift+N to launch a private window.


Conclusion 


Browsing the Internet in private mode comes handy in many different scenarios. Private browsing prevents your data from getting saved and enhances your information security. It reduces the chances of data theft and offers you the privacy that you need if you are using a shared network.