Do you use Private Browsing feature of your browser?

Discussion in 'polls' started by ams963, Aug 14, 2012.

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Do you use Private Browsing feature of your browser?

  1. Yes- always

    20 vote(s)
    18.5%
  2. Yes- occassionally

    26 vote(s)
    24.1%
  3. Yes- rarely

    13 vote(s)
    12.0%
  4. No- used to do it

    2 vote(s)
    1.9%
  5. No

    45 vote(s)
    41.7%
  6. Never knew my browser had that feature

    2 vote(s)
    1.9%
  1. sweater

    sweater Registered Member

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    Location:
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    Yes, always.
     
  2. TheWindBringeth

    TheWindBringeth Registered Member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2012
    Posts:
    2,171
    Even if your ISP logs everything it can, some of your web activity and the information passed (possibly much if you make an effort to use HTTPS) would be obscured by SSL encryption. Your ISP could tell which secure sites you are visiting but not which pages you are viewing, etc. The specific sites you are visiting, and if applicable, third-party tracking sites could keep track of all your page views, etc in both the HTTP and HTTPS cases. IOW, your ISP may log/track some things but there are other things and other entities to be concerned about. If you have concern for privacy I mean.

    I'm not sure what is/isn't saved during a Private Browsing mode session, but across sessions, things like history, cookies, cache files, offline storage, etc aren't supposed to be remembered. That is important if you want to protect yourself not only against vanilla cookie based tracking but also the advanced tracking techniques. If those are of concern to you, you might want to consider Private Browsing mode or at least try to duplicate some of its clearing via normal settings.

    Built-in, addon, and/or proxy type components that perform malicious URL checking, etc can foil the objective of using Private Browsing or Private Browsing like setups for tracking prevention. If the browser or another component is sending request URLs to a third-party, especially if it does so along with a GUID, that third-party can obviously track you (far better than anyone else, potentially). If that applies in your context, you could either try to change things to prevent that or accept it on the basis that at least you are still taking steps to prevent destination sites and most third-parties from tracking you.
     
  3. RJK3

    RJK3 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2011
    Posts:
    862
    I find it quite useful, particularly when using someone else's computer.

    It's a quick way to make a temporary session and use all your login credentials on various sites - without affecting the other person's settings.
     
  4. ght1

    ght1 Guest

    Not at all.
     
  5. Techwiz

    Techwiz Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2012
    Posts:
    541
    Location:
    United States
    No, private browsing model may block web history, but it doesn't block cookies. I prefer to run a custom configuration to manage my own privacy.

    Browser:
    disabled caches
    block all cookies (except when absolutely needed)
    block Firefox from remembering form data and password management.
    I run select add-ons to help refine my control:
    NoScript, Ref Control, Request Policy, UAControl, Self-Destructing Cookies, Perspectives, Calomel SSL, HTTPSEverywhere.
    Note: Some of the sites I visit have very predictable URL addresses, so I can navigate without having to click anything on screen and without enabling scripts.

    Browser Support:
    connect by VPN when connecting to specific sites.
    sandboxed browser (I visit a small handful of sites, so I purge religiously).
    Comodo Secure DNS

    I feel much safe browsing this way, than I do relying on a browser that doesn't keep logs of activity, but permits websites to store and cache data freely.
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2013
  6. guest

    guest Guest

    I use private browsing for one reason mainly and it's not privacy : avoiding unnecessary writes on my SSD! That works best with Firefox/Aurora in my experience (not allowing caching on the drive, just in memory) which is also the browser that I use 95 % of the time. I don't need browsing history. If I've closed a tab by accident I can get that back anyway even with private browsing, that's enough for me. :)
     
  7. mechBgon

    mechBgon Registered Member

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2013
    Posts:
    68
    Location:
    USA
    Yes, nearly all the time (InPrivate on IE). I also have IE auto-delete on closing and have a /AUTO shortcut set up for CCleaner for good measure, including cookie deletion. I also make a practice of doing my identity-critical stuff, including email and finances, in a separate browsing session, then closing the browser and wiping the history before going on to watch the latest funny cat videos/etc. This helps prevent cross-site scripting.

    This means I have to enter complex passwords on websites at every browser launch, but that's made simple with biometrics, as long as I don't have chemical-resistant gloves on, an occupational hazard that I do deal with at work.

    The upside is that if the bad guys come up with a clever way to mine the temporary Internet files for stuff they could make use of, they're not going to have a history to work from. It's working OK for my purposes. Some people would find it disruptive if they're accustomed to having their sites remember them, though.
     
  8. Wild Hunter

    Wild Hunter Former Poster

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2012
    Posts:
    1,375
    Of my browsers, rarely. I would prefer this or even this.

    But I frequently use whatever private mode is available on situations where I have no option but to use the default browser of someone else's computer.
     
  9. moontan

    moontan Registered Member

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2010
    Posts:
    3,931
    Location:
    Québec
    i just set the cache manually to 0 in Option/Advanced/Network in Firefox.
    there's no need to use Private mode just for that.
     
  10. guest

    guest Guest

    That I do (check) too of course, but I don't want not only cache files but also not any browser history (or say as less as possible!) written a) unnecessarily to my SSD and b) of course also not - as a positive side effect - for privacy reasons, because privacy is generally a good thing. :)

    You can do whatever you want of course, but I use private mode with SSD's as my default setting to do all those things and I use Firefox btw. because I like it much more (add-ons, especially for privacy) but also because IE's private browsing function for example does to my knowledge (at least in the past that was the case!) delete the cache only AFTER closing private sessions but is NOT preventing it from being written in the first place (= not good for my SSD, so makes not much sense to me with IE).

    I guess it all started when my first SSD was new and I wanted a FAST way (being quite nervous about write amplification etc. :D) to disable all that unnecessary writing to it. Enabling private mode was the first thing that came to mind, worked quite well and since then I stayed with it. As I said, I don't need and don't want history function and if closing one tab wrongly (that happens) I can get it back anyways.

    And I simply don't like the idea or theoretical possibility that anyone getting access to my running computer COULD so easily see where I was surfing before (just looking into browsing history). No, I am not doing anything forbidden etc., so that is not the reason, but I just DO NOT LIKE the feeling of being controlled and figured out etc. Same way I would never write things (thoughts, comments) into a book while reading it, I don't want people to be able to "look into my head". :D - So I am very happy using private mode for not only one reason and yes, I am a little bit paranoid too thus in very good company here. :)
     
  11. kupo

    kupo Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2011
    Posts:
    1,121
    No, Sandboxie ;)
     
  12. m00nbl00d

    m00nbl00d Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2009
    Posts:
    6,623
    I use Chromium's Incognito, simply because I got JavaScript disabled by default, and whenever I need to allow it for some website, sometimes I forget to remove the whitelisted domain. By enabling Incognito, the next time I start the browser, the whitelisted domain is gone. This is handy. :D

    Otherwise, I wouldn't bother with it.
     
  13. bo elam

    bo elam Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2010
    Posts:
    5,982
    Location:
    Nicaragua
    I set Firefox to "Never remember history" which uses same settings as Private Browsing. In Firefox if we allow Bookmarks to be saved while running sandboxed (SBIE), history also gets saved. I dont want history to be saved, this is why I use Private browsing.

    Bo
     
  14. mechBgon

    mechBgon Registered Member

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2013
    Posts:
    68
    Location:
    USA
    If you have surplus RAM, you could also set up a RAMDisk for this purpose.
     
  15. guest

    guest Guest

    Yes. But I am using Win7 32-bit because I simply don't need more RAM than MS thought they would grant us at a max with 32-bit. (4 GB installed, 3.25 GB usable). - In past years I experimented a few times with RAMDisks but SSD and Firefox caching in RAM is working fine here and is more than fast enough for me. :cool: - I know one could patch Win7 and also that so far unused RAM could be used for having a RAMdisk but I wouldn't like the hassle and possible problems. - If I needed more RAM (which I really don't, I am not a gamer and not working with huge files etc.) I would run 64-bit Win7 and then of course think about using some of it as RAMdisk if I had plenty of it. But really, my 4 GB are never more used than up to 80 % in very rare cases with always firefox/aurora being the "culprit" (normal seems to be 50-60 %) so I am happy with what I have. :D - My pagefile is also not on SSD but HDD and that doesn't slow me down at all or at least not to a point where I would want something to improve. ;)
     
  16. c2d

    c2d Registered Member

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2007
    Posts:
    572
    Location:
    Bosnia
    Sometimes,when surfing pron :D
     
  17. Snowden

    Snowden Registered Member

    Joined:
    May 2, 2012
    Posts:
    68
    Like a lot of others have said... I tend to use SBIE at home and Privacy mode say if I'm needing to grab something off a computer at school or so.

    At home, if I forget...it's a CCleaner 3pass wipe + the extended privazer scan and clean..

    Am I missing anything that would leave traces?
     
  18. Noob

    Noob Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2009
    Posts:
    6,491
    But you can do it without it.
     
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2013
  19. ProTruckDriver

    ProTruckDriver Registered Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2008
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    Location:
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    Yes, sometimes.
     
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