Incognito Internet: Private Browsing Explained


Online browsing in private isn’t a new concept for Internet aficionados. But what many people don’t realize is that they don’t have to go through the hassle of deleting their Internet history every time they are done cruising the World Wide Web. Even those that know about the browser features that allow them to surf incognito are still most likely turning on private browsing only after they’ve opened up the browser window.


Luckily for those that prefer to peruse in private, most popular browsers have a way to turn on incognito mode permanently. That means you don’t have to remember to turn the feature on – it will simply be set up every time you pop open your browser window.


Mozilla Firefox

By utilizing the Privacy settings within Firefox’s Options dialog box, you can configure your Internet experience to ensure that you’re surfing in private every time. Start by clicking on the orange Firefox button. (You’ll find it in the upper left corner of the Internet window.)


From the drop-down menu that appears, select Options, and then Privacy. You’ll then see a dialog box that says “Firefox Will…” Using the pull-down options, choose Never Remember History. Finally, select Save, and Firefox will never again remember your Internet history or record any of the websites you’ve been to.


Google Chrome

Google’s web browser was the first to become well-known for its ‘incognito mode’ feature, which allows users to surf without having their steps traced. It’s easy to configure the browser so that your Internet window starts up incognito automatically, eliminating the need to choose a private browsing window after your Internet has already started up.


Start by right-clicking on your Google Chrome shortcut icon in the taskbar or home screen. Select Properties from the list of choices that appears. Under the Shortcuts tab, you’ll see a box labeled Target. Inside the target box, you’ll notice a path. It should end with “Application\chrome.exe”. At the end of that path, without any spaces, type in the phrase“-incognito” (Don’t include the quotation marks.) Click OK when you’re done, and you’ve now got a Google Chrome browser set to permanently start in incognito.


Internet Explorer

Like Chrome, setting up a private browsing experience in IE requires a simple path manipulation. Right-click on the Internet Explorer shortcut and select the Properties option. Again, next to the Type option, you’ll see a path. At the end of the path that is already entered, add “-private.” (Also without quotations or a period.) Choose OK and you’re all set.