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Keeping Your Private Information Private: Erase Your Internet History

written by: Michael Dougherty•edited by: Aaron R.•updated: 3/29/2011

When on the Internet, you transmit a huge amount of information about yourself, and sometimes you don't even realize you're transmitting. Everything from your current location to credit card numbers are regularly transmitted over the Internet. Let's do our best to erase those traces on your computer

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    Internet Privacy

    In this day and age it is of the utmost importance to delete all traces of your Internet activity on your PC (Personal Computer) on a regular basis. Whether this is done using a GUI (Graphical User Interface) or manually is a moot point as long as it gets done. Many traces of your online activity are stored on your PC as you browse the Internet, chat with friends and make online purchases. This is the information a malicious user will target in an attempt to steal your login information, steal your money or even steal your identity.

    In this article I will take a look at what I find to be the best options for a paid and free Internet history privacy eraser as well as how to do it the old fashioned way... manually. As I said above, how you delete traces of your Internet activity is not important. All that matters is that it gets done on a regular basis.

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    Webroot Window Washer

    Internet History Privacy Eraser Software - Webroot Window Washer Webroot Window Washer is one of the more full featured Internet privacy software solutions offering the ability to delete all traces of your Internet activity and much more. These additional features include a file shredder, free space cleaner and total system erase, and several other tools to protect/delete important files. Webroot Window Washer supports Internet Explorer, AOL, Netscape and Firefox web browsers on Windows 7, Vista, 2000 and XP.

    While this program is fairly full featured and does a great job of erasing all traces of your Internet activity I would personally like to see support for Google Chrome and Apple Safari. Until then I'll be keeping my $29.95 in my pocket.

    (Image: http://www.webroot.com/shared/images/ww-pdp-boxshot-burst.gif)

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    CCleaner

    Internet History Privacy Eraser Software - CCleaner CCleaner is a fantastic program that does an excellent job of deleting traces of your Internet activity on your Windows PC. Not only will CCleaner help you maintain your privacy while online, it does a decent job of finding and deleting files on your PC that are no longer needed, freeing up a large amount of space in some cases. CCleaner will clean all traces of your Internet activity on Internet Explorer, Firefox, Google Chrome, Opera and Safari on the Windows OS (Operating System), and the best part is that the program is free to download and use.

    (Image: http://static.piriform.com/pf/cc_preview.png)

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    Manually Deleting Browsing History

    Internet Explorer

    Click Tools > Internet Options > General Tab > Browser History > Delete

    This will delete your browsing history, cookies and temporary Internet files by default with the option to remove saved passwords and web form data as well.

    Firefox

    Firefox > Options > Privacy > Clear Your Recent History > Clear Now

    This will delete your browsing and download history, form and search history, cookies, cache and active logins by default with the option to remove site specific data as well.

    Google Chrome

    Wrench > Options > Under the Bonnet > Privacy > Clear Browsing Data

    This will delete your browsing and download history and Internet cache by default with the option to remove cookies, saved passwords and form data.

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    References