It is not proper to delete browsing history alone, as some people have the misconception that if they delete browsing history from time to time, it would be enough to maintain their privacy. But it is much more complicated than that.
Google Activity or Google Web & App History stores all the information you have searched using certain Google services, such as Search, YouTube or Chrome to improve your search experience.
This feature is useful if you want to quickly browse your favorite websites or if you want to restore a tab that you accidentally closed. But what if you share your PC with someone and you don’t want them to find out what you searched for? Fortunately, there are ways to delete your search and browsing history and limit what Google collects about you.
If you use a shared computer at work or home, you may not want others to see what you searched for. Here’s how to clear the address bar suggestion (which uses your previous searches) in most browsers currently in use.
Launch the Chrome browser and click on the three dots icon at the top right of the browser.
Hover over ‘History’ in the Chrome menu, then select ‘History’ again from the expanded options. You can also open your chrome history page using the Ctrl+H.
From the options available on the left side of the ‘History’ page, click on the ‘Clear Browsing Data’ option.
A new “Clear Browsing Data” interface will pop up on the screen with several checkboxes. Click on the ‘Advanced’ tab.
Next, click the dropdown menu next to the ‘Time Range’ option and select ‘All Time’ from the options.
Now click on the ‘Clear Data’ button to remove all saved search history from Chrome.
To clear your search history in Firefox, click the menu icon at the top right of the browser.
Select ‘Options’ from the menu that appears.
A new ‘Options’ tab will open on the screen comprising all the Firefox settings. Select ‘Privacy and security’ in the left panel.
This will take you to the ‘Browser Privacy’ settings. Scroll down and select “Clear History” under the “History” section.
A new ‘Clear Recent History’ popup interface will be displayed on the screen with several checkboxes. Click the dropdown menu next to the ‘Time range to clear’ option and select ‘All’ from the list. It’s up to you how far back in time you want to go, but if you want to thoroughly clean your browsing history, you should select ‘All’.
Now select/tick the checkboxes in the detailed list of items under ‘History’ and ‘Data’, and click ‘OK’ to delete all your saved browsing and searching history.
Clear Google account search history
Clearing search and browsing history in your browser only deletes history that is saved locally on your computer. To delete your Google web and app activity that is stored on Google’s servers, visit ‘My Activity Page’.
Visit myactivity.google.com to see all your activities and history, including Google Search, YouTube, and other Google services.
On the new page, you’ll see the website links and searches you’ve done. This also includes the search history of your mobile devices. All these activities are separated according to time.
You can delete these activities individually by clicking the three dot menu next to each activity and selecting ‘Delete’.
To delete all activities at once, select the ‘Delete activity by’ option on the left panel.
A popup appears allowing you to choose the time accordingly. Select ‘All the time’ to remove everything completely.
A new popup will appear with a list of all services. You can choose the services individually by clicking the checkboxes next to each service and then select ‘Next’ to clear all activities.
In the new pop-up window that appears, click ‘Delete’ to confirm that you want to delete your history.
A new screen appears confirming that your search history has been successfully deleted.
If your computer is used by multiple users, it’s always a good idea to clear your search history from within the browser. Or, if you don’t want to bother with that, and there really are very few of your searches that you don’t want anyone to find, then just the incognito window in your browser. That will make sure that none of your search or the websites you open are saved in the browser.