Cover your tracks
Click here if you need to navigate away from this site quickly
Pages of websites, including these pages and any of the support website pages, will appear in your internet browser history.
This means that people who have access to your computer, laptop, tablet or phone can see the websites you have visited, even if you have logged off.
If you do not want anyone to know that you have visited this page or any other domestic abuse website there are some steps that you can take:
- You can choose to visit this website, or any support websites, at a public place like an internet cafe, public library or even a friend's house. This is the easiest way to ensure that your tracks are covered online
- Should you choose to use this page at home, you can delete your broswer history
Here are some pointers from Women's Aid* about keeping safe online at home:
Warning about deleting cookies and address histories
It's important to state that there is a risk involved in removing data from your computer. For instance, if your partner uses online banking and has a saved password, then if you clear the cookies on your PC, your partner 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 8Click 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.
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, Opera and other browsers
There are many new browsers on the market, so it is always advisable to search for advice on your own browser. For example this tutorial shows you various security measures on Opera, or you can see the settings for Google Chrome.
Never be afraid to ask for help and always remember to dial 999 in an emergency.
*Online safety advice is taken from the Women's Aid website, www.womensaid.org.uk, and is protected by copyright to Women's Aid Federation of England (© 2010 Women's Aid Federation of England).