How can I clear my browsing history on exit?

Updated: 02/01/2021 by Computer Hope
Internet browsers

Following the steps on this page causes your Internet browser to automatically delete the history recorded during your current session each time it is closed. Although this may help protect your privacy, it should be noted that it slightly slows down your overall Internet experience because clearing history also deletes cached files and cookies.

Clearing browser history on exit is ideal for public computers. It helps prevent users from accessing private data, like usernames, passwords, and other personal website information, of the person that previously used the computer.

Tip

For steps on deleting history data one time, see: How do I clear my Internet browser history?

Chrome

Chrome
  1. Open the Google Chrome browser.
  2. Click the Chrome settings icon in the upper-right corner of the browser window.
  3. In the drop-down menu that appears, select Settings.

Chrome menu Settings selector

  1. On the left side, click the Privacy and security option.

Privacy and security selector

  1. In the Privacy and security section, click the Cookies and other site data selector.

Cookies and other site data selector

  1. Under General settings, click the toggle switch next to Clear cookies and site data when you quit Chrome so that it's in the on position.

Clear site data on exit.

  1. Now your browser history is cleared each time you close Chrome.

Mozilla Firefox

Firefox
  1. Open the Mozilla Firefox browser.
  2. Click the menu icon Firefox menu in the upper-right corner of the browser window.
  3. Select Options from the drop-down menu.

Firefox options menu

  1. In the window that appears, click the Privacy & Security option in the left navigation pane.

Privacy and security selector.

  1. Scroll down to the Cookies and Site Data section and check the box next to Delete cookies and site data when Firefox is closed.

Clear site data and cookies on close

  1. Now your browser history is cleared each time you close Firefox.
Microsoft Edge

Microsoft Edge

  1. Open the Microsoft Edge browser.
  2. Click the Settings and more icon Microsoft Edge More menu in the upper-right corner of the browser window.
  3. In the drop-down menu, near the bottom, select Settings.

Settings selector in Edge

  1. Under the Settings section on the left, click Privacy, search, and services.

Site permissions selector

  1. In the Clear browsing data section, click the link that says Choose what to clear every time you close the browser.

Choose what to clear when you exit Edge

  1. Click the toggle switch next to Browsing history so that it's in the on position.

Clear history on close

  1. Now your browser history is cleared each time you close Edge.

Microsoft Internet Explorer

Internet Explorer
  1. Open the Microsoft Internet Explorer browser.
  2. Click Tools IE Tools icon in the upper-right corner.
  3. Select Internet options from the drop-down menu.

Internet options selector

  1. In the Internet Options window, make sure the General tab is selected.
  2. In the Browsing history section, check the box next to Delete browsing history on exit (A). Click Apply (B), then click OK (C).

Delete browsing history on exit

  1. Now your browser history is cleared each time you close Internet Explorer.

Safari

Safari

Unfortunately, the Safari browser does not have a clear history on exit setting. The best solution is to manually clear your browsing history, then enable a setting that keeps the browser from storing it in the first place. The downside to this option is that privacy mode must be turned on each time a user opens the browser. For steps on entering private browsing, see the Safari section on our incognito mode page.

Opera

Opera
  1. Open the Opera browser.
  2. Click Menu button in Opera in the upper-left corner of the browser window.
  3. In the drop-down menu that appears, select Settings.

Opera settings selector

  1. In the window that appears, click Advanced on the left side of the screen, then click Privacy & security.

Opera Privacy selector

  1. In the Privacy and security section, click the Site Settings option.

Opera site settings selector

  1. Near the top, under Permissions, click the Cookies and site data option.

Cookies and site data selector

  1. Under Cookies and site data, click the toggle switch next to Clear cookies and site data when you quit Opera so that it's in the on position.

Opera clear cookies and site data

  1. Now your browser history is cleared each time you close Opera.