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Your computer is constantly recording the sites that you visit, and the pages that you read. Most of the time this is useful; web browsers store a history of pages that we have visited days or even months ago, so we can easily find them again when we want to.

However, if other people have access to your computer or other device, you need to be aware that this browser history is accessible to them.

You may not wish others to know that you have visited the Restored website. This page offers guidance on how to delete your internet surfing history, and minimise the risk of someone else discovering you have visited this site. Please note, however, that no advice on this topic is foolproof, and browsers change all the time. The safest way to cover your online tracks is to view this site at a local library, a friend’s house, or at work.

How to delete your internet browsing history

Firstly, here is a list of useful terms you might come across and what they mean:

  • History – this is a list of every site that you have visited, ordered from most recent to oldest.
  • Temporary Internet Files – also known as a ‘cache’, this is a store of images and files associated with the history. It enables the site to load more quickly when you revisit it.
  • Cookies – a cookie is a small file that is placed on your computer by the website you are visiting. It logs information and remembers passwords and usernames for you.
  • Saved Form and Search History – this stores text that you have typed into your search engine (such as Google or Yahoo!) and remembers details for you when you fill in online forms.
  • Saved Passwords – your browser will have asked you if you would like to remember a password and username when you log into websites. This is where this data is held.

It is important to note that deleting all or some of this data from your browser may raise suspicion if there is another person using the same computer as you.

For example, removing cookies will remove stored login details (passwords for bank accounts etc.) that may belong to the other person. Removing your history will erase records of the sites you've visited, but keep stored information like usernames and passwords.

Here are some useful websites that will explain to you how to delete your internet history on different web browsers and on Android or iPhone mobile devices:

Private browsing

This is a privacy feature in some browsers which allows you to surf the internet without storing any data that could be retrieved at a later date. If you enable private browsing, the sites you browse will not show up in your history. It's sometimes also referred to as an 'incognito window'.

How to delete emails

If you are concerned about other people who may have access to your email on your computer, the safest way to email us at Restored is to create a new email account with an online provider such as Hotmail or Google. Create an email address with them that does not use your name, such as grape70@hotmail.co.uk, and keep this secret.

If you have already corresponded with us via email and are concerned about the security of your email account, here are some steps you can take to safeguard your tracks:

  • Delete all emails you have sent to us. These will be stored in the “Sent” folder. When you have deleted them, you will need to go to the “Deleted Items” or “Trash” folder, and delete them from there also (or delete all items in this folder).
  • You may also have begun writing an email that you haven’t yet sent to us. This may be stored in your “Drafts” folder. Go to your “Drafts” folder and delete this email.

Making a Safety Plan

Thinking ahead to the possibility of violence or abuse and planning what you would do can make it much easier to respond in a dangerous situation is a great way to be prepared and protect yourself.

Making a safety plan