Cover your tracks

If you don't want anyone to know you have visited this website, there are simple steps you can take to cover your tracks. But if you want to be completely sure of not being tracked online, the safest way is to access the internet at a local library, a friend's house or at work.

If you're interrupted by anyone you can close the window quickly by:
WINDOWS: Alt_F4 (hold down ALT key, press and release F4)
MAC: APPLE_W (hold down APPLE key, press and release W)

Other people can discover what websites you visit

Internet browser usually save information from the sites you visit as you surf the internet, including pictures from sites you have visited, words you have typed into search engines and a history section which shows all the sites you have visited. There are ways to delete these, minimising the chances of someone finding out you have visited this website.

Take care when you delete information

While deleting data can hide the trail of websites you have visited, there is a risk involved. For instance, if your someone else uses online banking on the same computer and has a saved password, then if you clear the cookies on your PC, they will realise you've done so, because their password will no longer be saved.  Also, your partner may notice if the address history on the PC has been cleared, and this may raise suspicion.

How do I work out which browser I'm using?

If you know what browser you are using, then skip to the relevant instructions below. If you do not know the type of browser you are using, click on Help on the toolbar at the top of the browser screen. A drop down menu will appear, the last entry will say About Internet Explorer, About Mozilla Firefox, or something similar. The entry refers to which browser type you are using - you should then refer to the relevant instructions below.

Internet Explorer 7 & 8

Click on the Tools menu and select Internet Options. In the General page under Browser History, select the Delete... button. Either select and delete each section: Temporary internet files; Cookies, History; Forms data and Passwords; or select the Delete all... button at the bottom to clear everything.

Mozilla Firefox 8

Click on Tools and Options. Firefox bundles cookies, forms and history under the heading ‘history’. Click the privacy tab, then on “clear your recent history”. Select the period you want to delete. Click on Details to select cookies, forms etc.

To delete passwords click on the security tab where you can view all the passwords saved when you browse the web. You can delete them here and remember not to allow Firefox to save them in the future.

In Firefox you (or someone accessing your computer) can actually read the passwords saved on your system. If you use the same passwords for many things consider changing them all if you have allowed your browser to save any.

You can also adjust how you want Firefox to store your data under the privacy tab.

Safari

To remove history go to History, and click Clear History.
To remove cookies go to Settings (right hand side), Preferences, Privacy tab and click Remove all Website Data (or Details to select certain sites).

Chrome

Click the spanner icon  on the browser toolbar. Select Tools. Select Clear browsing data.
In the dialogue that appears, select the "Clear browsing history" checkbox. Use the menu at the top to select the amount of data that you want to delete. Select beginning of time to clear your entire browsing history. Click Clear browsing data.

Deleting your browsing history:

Internet browsers also keep a record of all the web pages you visit. This is known as a 'history'. To delete history for Internet Explorer and Netscape/Firefox hold down the Ctrl key on the keyboard, then press the H key (Crtl, Alt and H for Opera). Find any entries that say www.stonewallscotland.org.uk, right click and choose Delete. For Safari, select History at top of the screen and choose "Clear History"

E-mail - be aware of how records of your emails can be accessed:

Any email you have previously sent will be stored in sent Items. Go to sent items and delete emails you don't want a person to see. If you started an email but didn't finish it, it might be in your drafts folder. Go to the draft folder to delete it. If you reply to any email, the original message will probably be in the body of the message - delete the email if you don't want anyone to see your original message.

When you delete an item in any email program (Outlook Express, Outlook, Thunderbird etc) it does not really delete the item - it moves the item to a folder called Deleted Items. You have to delete the items in Deleted Items to remove them completely
If there's a risk that someone may know how to access your emails, it's a good idea to set up a new email account. Use a provider like Hotmail or Yahoo for an account you can access from anywhere, and use a name that is not recognisable as you, for example bakedbeans@hotmail.co.uk. Keep this email secret.

Toolbars:

Toolbars such as Google, AOL and Bing keep a record of the search words you have typed into the toolbar search box. In order to erase all the search words you have typed in, you will need to check the individual instructions for each type of toolbar. For example, for the Google toolbar all you need to do is click on the Google icon, and choose "Clear Search History".

General security:

If you do not use a password to log on to your computer, someone else will be able to access your email and track your internet usage. The safest way to find information on the internet, would be at a local library, a friend's house, or at work.


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If you cannot find the information you need on this website, you can call our info line on 08000 50 20 20 (Mon-Fri 9:30am - 5:30pm) and we will try to point you in the right direction.