What is Anonymous Web Browsing?
When you surf the Web you normally create a trail of histories and files on your computer. Your browser, such as Internet Explorer or Firefox, records websites visited, search and download information, as well as web form data. This information is stored on your local hard disk along with cookies and temporary Internet files.
Applications to navigate the World Wide Web until now only provided methods for deleting these files and clearing the Internet history on a category basis, or altogether. However, downsides include that these measures are reactive, and that you remove all pertinent information, e.g. ‘Remember me on this site’ or ‘Save password’, independent of content sensitiveness or Web address.
In contrast, anonymous Web browsing implemented in Google Chrome, Internet Explorer 8 and Mozilla’s latest Firefox browser allows surfing anonymously by changing to stealth mode without generating a history in your browser records, with temporary Internet files eradicated on the fly; favorites and downloaded files are not deleted of course. As you can switch modes when you want anonymous Web browsing is not only proactive but also selective.
Anonymous Web browsing is advertised as a means of not giving the game away about your wife’s Christmas or birthday present you have been looking for in the Internet. Cynics on the other hand refer to Google Chrome‘s ‘Incognito’, Microsoft’s Internet Explorer 8 ‘InPrivacy’ and Firefox’ ‘Private Browsing’ anonymous Web browsing disrespectfully as ‘porno-mode’.
Fact is that these new Web browser features meet users’ demand for privacy, myself included: by means of visiting them in anonymous mode I can prevent specific URLs, for instance, those of online banking, from showing up with Smart Location Bar (Awesome Bar) in Firefox when typing a web address in normal mode, which is more than useful if somebody note close to me is looking over my shoulders. Apart from that, leaving no online banking information in my browser cache etc adds an additional layer of protection against online threats or computer theft.
Please note that anonymous Web browsing by means of Incognito, InPrivate or Private Browsing does not prevent what your Internet Service Provider or large funded organizations may log about your surfing habits. Neither protects anonymous Web browsing what others may record about you when visiting their sites.
Thus, Incognito, InPrivate or Private Browsing fortify your Internet privacy on the local computer only, without making your Web history forensically clean. Let’s have a look at them on the next page and check out the top anonymous Web proxy servers and the top Web anonymizers on page 3.