Trying to distract from the “nuclear option” to use to completely clear your history with all the searches you’ve made over time, Google has already introduced a shortcut on your PC for “deleting traces” left in your Chrome history.
Based on the idea that “conscientious” web browser use is usually limited to the current session, Google is already offering Chrome users a way to quickly clean up the last 60 minutes of browsing history, leaving virtually untouched records saved during daily use. The feature can be found behind the Settings menu, under Privacy and Security, with users able to choose between One Hour, 24 Hours 7 Days 4 Weeks and All Time.
While the All Time option comes checked by default, allowing you to clear your Chrome browsing history from the current day to the entire documented period, the other options might be more appealing for multiple reasons. On the one hand Google would like, if possible, to avoid deleting your browsing history completely, because it hits directly into the company’s business model and the revenue made by leveraging your data. But if you choose to delete your entire browsing history, you too will lose out on certain benefits such as auto-complete form data, custom settings saved on certain sites, and online accounts you are logged into. In addition, if you delete your browsing history with the intention of hiding things from someone, the fact that your entire history is suddenly gone will certainly be suspicious.
Instead, the option made relatively handy in the History menu, right on the way to more effective settings for the intended purpose, might be enough to remove doubts about “dodgy” sites and searches initiated with the Chrome browser.
In other news, you can avoid both of these “problems” by using Google Chrome in Incognito mode from the start, including accessing the Google Search engine. Except that in this mode the search session cannot be customized, and any pages accessed will have to be authenticated from scratch if they require the use of a user account. The good news is that incognito sections can now also be protected using the mobile phone’s fingerprint sensor, preventing unauthorised people from viewing the browsing session.