Searching through search engines and surfing various websites is a daily activity that almost everyone does. However, sometimes the dangers that lurk on the internet make us wary of accessing the internet carelessly. Therefore, almost all web browsers provide incognito mode.
Incognito mode can make browsing sessions safer and ensure more privacy. Search traces will not be recorded in the browser as they would in regular search mode.
Incognito mode, also known as private browsing, is aimed at erasing local traces of where you’ve been, what you’re looking for, and the answers to the forms you’ve filled out. For those of you who are curious about what is incognito mode, see the explanation below.
What is Incognito Mode?
Incognito mode is a web browser feature that allows users to surf the internet without leaving a trace of browsing history on the computer or other type of device used. When you use incognito mode, the browser will not store cookies, temporary files, or any other data related to your browsing activity.
For example, if you are in incognito mode through the Chrome browser and browse Twitter, all cookies and the credentials you enter will be deleted immediately when you close the Twitter tab. You’ll need to log back in if you want to open Twitter again in incognito mode. All past traces in the search bar will also not be saved.
What is Incognito Mode Benefits?
Based on the understanding of the incognito mode above, it can be ascertained that it provides benefits for its users. Here are the benefits of incognito mode for active internet users.
The first benefit of browsing with incognito mode is that it protects privacy. For those of you who often use shared computers such as family, school, campus, or office computers, using incognito mode is the right choice. Web history, cookies, and search history will not be stored. So that the next computer user will not know your trace.
In addition, the magic of incognito mode allows users to open a particular website many times without showing that site as the most visited website on the new tab page. The site’s URL also won’t automatically appear in the address bar when typed again.
If you download a file from the internet, the file’s search history in the search bar won’t be saved. Similarly, the history of downloaded files. However, the file will still remain on your device if you download the file to storage, whether it’s a computer or another device.
Providing Cybersecurity for Users
The second benefit is to provide security for internet users. Using incognito mode can protect you from several online threats such as phishing and malware attacks. Because your browsing history and cookies aren’t stored, malicious websites can’t use them to track your activity or steal your information.
Cookies themselves are useful for storing browsing data for a site, including login credentials. Some people sometimes register or log in to just any website, not infrequently forget to remove an account from a certain website. This carelessness can be avoided if you use incognito mode and minimize the possibility of web phishing.
Try a New Website or Online Service
The third benefit is that it is suitable for trials. If you’re trying to test an online service or visit a new website, incognito mode can be used to test how the site works and behaves when new users visit it. Very practical and secure because the browser does not use login credentials or stored cookies.
You don’t need to register right away and run the risk of your activity being tracked by a website before you are absolutely sure you will use the services of that site. With incognito mode, you can click on as many services or features that the website offers to understand how it works.
Convenient Online Shopping
The last benefit, it is useful for maintaining the privacy of online shopping. Incognito mode can prevent online shopping sites from tracking your browsing activity and target you with ads based on your search history. Suitable for those of you who often feel annoyed by getting advertisements for products that you have been looking for on online shopping applications.
Not only that, but some people may be using the same device as family or loved ones, making the surprise difficult because the search history is always saved. Then you can use incognito mode to buy birthday gifts online without worrying about being known by the person who wants to give the gift.
Disadvantages of Incognito Mode
You are not completely invisible
Behind the advantages offered by using incognito mode, it also has a number of disadvantages. The first reason is because you are not completely invisible. Internet service providers (ISPs), offices, and schools can still know which websites to visit and what customers, employees, and students search for in browsers.
Needs to be activated manually
The next drawback is that incognito mode needs to be activated manually. Users must click on the incognito mode option in the browser to be able to use it. Also, if you’re hoping to open blocked sites, incognito mode isn’t a solution. An authorized internet service provider can still limit your space, unless you install a VPN.
Not completely safe
The third drawback, incognito mode is not completely safe. Keep in mind that this feature only prevents the browser from recording session data. It does not block or mask IP addresses. Malware attacks may also occur if you log in while using incognito mode. The level of browsing security is still higher by enabling a VPN, as your IP address will not be tracked.
The website still know you
The last drawback, based on information from Google Chrome’s Help Center, websites can still know who you are if you log in incognito mode. The website will track your activity when you log in. This mode also doesn’t prevent websites you visit from providing targeted ads during an incognito session. Only after you close all incognito tabs can it not send targeted ads.
How to turn on incognito mode in the browsers
To open incognito mode in Chrome, click the menu (vertical three dots) at the top right, then select new incognito window. Alternatively, you can press Ctrl+Shift+N on Windows and Command+Shift+N for Mac. You can also open a link in incognito mode by hovering over the link you want to open, right-clicking, then selecting open link in incognito window.
For Firefox users, how to activate incognito mode via the menu is the same as Chrome. However, the incognito mode in Firefox is called private windows. An alternative incognito mode shortcut in Firefox you can press Control+Shift+P for Windows PCs and Shift+Command+P on macOS.
If you want to open incognito mode in the Apple Safari browser on your Mac device, click File in the menu bar, then click new private window. The shortcut to a private window in Safari is Shift+Command+N. To open a link in a private window, hold down the option key on your keyboard, right-click the link you want to open, then select open link in new private window.
On Microsoft Edge
Finally, for you Microsoft Edge users, click more actions (vertical three dots) at the top right, then select new inprivate window. You can use the shortcut Ctrl+Shift+P on Windows OS. To open a link in InPrivate Edge Browsing mode, right-click (or press Control+Click on a Mac) and select Open in InPrivate Window.
That’s how to surf the internet more safely. Don’t forget to update your browser to get the best experience in exploring the virtual world. If you are a person who is wary of cyber privacy, then you should use incognito mode. Download and subscribe to a VPN if you think you need extra protection.