Using InPrivate Browsing in Microsoft Edge for Windows 10

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InPrivate Browsing Mode

edge inprivate browsing
© Getty Images (Mark Airs #173291681).

This tutorial is only intended for users running the Microsoft Edge web browser on Windows 10 or above.

When browsing the web on Windows 10 with Microsoft Edge, several data components are stored on your device's local hard drive. These include a history of the websites that you've visited, cache and cookies associated with those sites, passwords and other personal data which you enter into web forms, and much more. Edge allows you to manage this data, and also allows you to delete some or all of it with just a few mouse clicks.

If you'd like to be proactive rather than reactive when it comes to these potentially sensitive data components, Edge offers InPrivate Browsing Mode -- which lets you freely surf your favorite websites without leaving any of this information behind at the end of your browsing session. InPrivate Browsing is particularly useful when using Edge on a shared device. This tutorial details the InPrivate Browsing feature and shows you how to activate it.

First, open your Edge browser. Click on the More actions menu, represented by three horizontally-placed dots. When the drop-down menu appears, select the option labeled New InPrivate window.

A new browser window should now be displayed. You'll notice a blue and white image in the upper left-hand corner, indicating that InPrivate Browsing Mode is active in the current window.

The rules of InPrivate Browsing automatically apply to all tabs opened within this window, or any window with this indicator visible. However, it is possible to have other Edge windows open simultaneously which do not adhere to these rules, so always make sure that InPrivate Browsing Mode is active before taking any action.

While surfing the web in InPrivate Browsing Mode, some data components such as cache and cookies are stored temporarily on your hard drive but are immediately deleted once the active window is closed. Other information, including browsing history and passwords, is not saved at all while InPrivate Browsing is active. With that said, some information does remain on the hard drive at the end of an InPrivate Browsing session -- including any changes you've made to Edge's settings or Favorites that you have saved.

It is important to note that although InPrivate Browsing ensures that remnants of your browsing session are not stored on your device's hard drive, it is not a vehicle for complete anonymity. For example, the administrator in charge of your network and/or your Internet service provider can still monitor your activity on the web, including the sites which you have visited. Also, websites themselves may still have the ability to obtain certain data about you through your IP address and other mechanisms.