How to Use Incognito Mode in Web Browsers

Incognito man

Privacy concerns, when using a shared computer for web browsing are often a big concern among netizens. We often don't want to reveal our browsing history to others in our homes or office. We generally also want to be in a logged-out state for all the accounts we used (on a shared computer) during a browsing session. All these issues and concerns can be easily resolved through incognito mode supported by all modern web browsers. It's easy to use and works like charm. In this tutorial, we'll learn about using incognito mode in Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, and Microsoft Edge web browsers.

Incognito man

Using an incognito mode doesn't make you anonymous or hide your identity. It simply erases your browsing history so that others using the same computer cannot peek into your browsing sessions.

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If you're using a web browser other than the ones mentioned above, the process of using an incognito mode is almost the same. So, let's get started and make our browsing sessions—a bit personal.

Using Incognito Mode in Mozilla Firefox

Firefox private window

In Firefox, the incognito mode is referred to as Private browsing and is quite easy to start with. There are two different methods to open a private browsing session with Firefox.

In the first method, you can click the settings menu on the top right and then can click the New Private Window option from the dropdown menu.

If you do not like menu clicks and are more inclined to use a keyboard shortcut, use the Ctrl + Shift + P shortcut to instantly open a new private browsing window. If you're on Mac, use the Cmd + Shift + P shortcut.

When in incognito mode, Firefox deletes all your cookies and your browsing history as soon as you close the private browsing window. It also gives you an option to quickly pin a private window to the taskbar.

Using Incognito Mode in Google Chrome

Google Chrome incognito window

Quite similar to Firefox, Google Chrome too offers an incognito mode and enables you to activate it in 2 different ways. It's the quickest way to hide your browsing activity on a shared computer.

To open an incognito window, click the settings menu on the top right like you did in Firefox and select the New Incognito window option from the dropdown menu.

And if you're a fan of keyboard shortcuts, use the Ctrl + Shift + N option. Mac users can use the Cmd + Shift + N keyboard shortcut.

Apart from deleting cookies and browsing history, it also erases information entered in web forms when in incognito mode. You can also opt to block 3rd-party tracking cookies while browsing in incognito mode.

Using Incognito Mode in Microsoft Edge

Microsoft Edge InPrivate window

In Microsoft Edge, incognito mode is known as InPrivate browsing. It's quite similar to the other two and gives you enough power to hide your browsing activities on your home or work computer.

You can either open an incognito window, by clicking the settings button and then clicking the New InPrivate window option. Or, use the Ctrl + Shift + N key combination. Mac users can use the Cmd + Shift + N option.

Optionally, you can also enable the blocking of trackers to further strengthen the privacy of your browsing activity. But this option is off by default.

Other web browsers built on the browsing engines used by these giants have similar options for incognito mode.