Confidentiality is like toilet paper: you begin to value it only when it runs out. I am quite calm about protecting my privacy, observing the basic set of rules for ensuring personal data security: I don’t download things from the Internet, I monitor what privileges the installed applications request and I don’t share links. Sometimes you can inadvertently go to a dubious website that can collect your data and then use it for malicious purposes. In this article, I will tell you how to protect yourself from these situations when using Chrome.
First, you need to figure out what modern sites are capable of and how secure they are.
Why cookies are needed
The least websites can do is send cookies to your computer or smartphone when you access the site. These are small data packets with key information about the visitor, which is stored on the device. This data means sites can identify those who have visited the site. Some online stores allow you to place products in the basket without signing in and store them until your next visit. This is possibly through having cookies on your device.
The main problem is these cookies (and not only them, by the way) can be collected by absolutely any site. Some warn about this and allow you to prohibit collection, while others – less responsible – don’t notify the user. Therefore, it’s very important, if necessary, to deprive the suspicious website of the data already collected about you, especially since it can be used for dubious and unsafe purposes.
How to go into Chrome Developer Settings
- Open in Chrome the site you want to delete data from
- Go to the context menu – “Additional Tools” – “Developer Tools”
- In the window that opens, click on the top of the two-arrow button and go to the Application tab
- Here, open the Clear Storage section and click on the Clear Site Data button.
If necessary, you can also prohibit the site from collecting data about you as a user. No site can receive personal information such as your last name, first name or phone number, unless you share it, but the list of information they do collect is quite extensive. These are cookies, cache files and session data, which include links you clicked, mouse movements, and much more. Therefore, if you don’t want to share this kind of data, simply uncheck and the site won’t receive them.
How to delete site data and cookies on Android
The mobile version also has a similar function, although it’s implemented in a slightly different way. If on desktop, users can delete data from specific sites selectively through the developer menu, then on Android only everything can be removed at once. In addition, on Chrome, deleting data means you’re signed out of almost all accounts on sites you use. So, think before you perform the below.
- Launch Chrome on Android, transfer it to the context menu, and from there to “Settings”
- Scroll through the available options to the “Personal data” section
- Open the “Clear History” tab and select the data you want to delete
- Confirm the deletion by pressing the blue “Delete data” button.
Why it’s better to delete cookies
Deleting cookies is very important. Even though many sites tell you they collect them, by default they don’t provide the ability to revoke permission and delete already accumulated data. Therefore, be sure to use the removal tips given above if you aren’t sure about the origin of the site or if you doubt you should visit it at all. It’s a pity Google hid the data deletion function so deeply that it would be practically impossible to find it for the average user without appropriate instructions.