Google is making it easier to cover your tracks in Chrome by preventing certain URLs appearing automatically in the browser's address bar.
When using a web browser people have numerous privacy concerns, many of which relate to the amount of data collected and stored about online activity. As part of a drive to give users more control over privacy, Google has been adding various tools and features to Chrome.
One of these new options is a new way to keep some of your search and browsing history secret from other people who may have access to your computer.
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You've probably noticed that when you type in Chrome's address bar – or Omnibox as Google likes to call it – you'll see a series of suggestions in a list that pops up. This list of suggestions is populated with links to sites you have visited and searches you have performed, and the thinking is that it gives you a quick way to revisit sites or repeat searches.
But the feature also gives away a lot about how you have been using your computer, and it is visible to anyone else who uses your computer, or who happens to be looking at your screen. While it is possible to wipe our your entire browsing and search history to keep your activity secret, this is a little extreme and also results in helpful links being removed.
Keep it private
It has long been possible – although not known by everyone – to use the arrow keys to highlight a suggestion and then press [Shift]+[Delete] to remove it. Now Google has made things even easier, and rather more obvious.
Now you can use your mouse to remove unwanted suggestions from the list. Just hover the mouse cursor over an entry you would like to remove and click the little x button that appears to the right. It's as simple as that! Of course, you can still use the old keyboard shortcut if you like, but many people will find using their mouse a whole lot easier.
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Sofia is a tech journalist who's been writing about software, hardware and the web for nearly 20 years – but still looks as youthful as ever! After years writing for magazines, her life moved online and remains fueled by technology, music and nature.
Having written for websites and magazines since 2000, producing a wide range of reviews, guides, tutorials, brochures, newsletters and more, she continues to write for diverse audiences, from computing newbies to advanced users and business clients. Always willing to try something new, she loves sharing new discoveries with others.
Sofia lives and breathes Windows, Android, iOS, macOS and just about anything with a power button, but her particular areas of interest include security, tweaking and privacy. Her other loves include walking, music, her two Malamutes and, of course, her wife and daughter.