How to Delete Incognito History [Full Guide]


Every web browser has an incognito mode that is a blessing for people who wish to keep their browsing history hidden.

However, though not many people know this, tracking your browsing history through incognito mode is still possible.

In this article, we will discuss how to delete incognito history, where your history is stored, and how to view it. By the end, you will become more informed about the topic.

What Is Incognito Browsing and How Does It Work?

Before we get into the explanation, let’s note some of the different names used for this mode. It’s called incognito browsing in Google Chrome, In-Private mode in Internet Explorer, and Private Browsing in Mozilla Firefox. So don’t get confused if your browser’s incognito mode doesn’t have the same name.

One of the incognito features is to prevent your device from storing or recording your browsing history, deleting any temporary data like cookies that your device might have stored once you close the incognito tab. Once you close the browser, it can be quite difficult to access your incognito search history because it is not recorded on your device.

Did You Know: If you want to hide your identity, you should use a VPN. VPNs offer an anti-tracking feature that protects your identity on the internet.

Is Incognito Browsing Really Safe?

Many people confuse browsing in incognito mode with safe browsing and being anonymous on the internet. However, this mode does not protect your identity nor does it hide your activity. It simply prevents other users from looking at your incognito tab history on your device, giving you some privacy.

Incognito mode does not prevent web tracking, as the websites you visit have a URL that can be viewed by your Internet Service Provider (ISP), and in some cases even your employer, not to mention hackers and data brokers.

Taking into account these data breaches and online tracking, you can easily conclude on your own that incognito browsing is not really safe.

Did You Know: Hiding your browsing data can easily be done by using a VPN for Chrome. There are also many affordable VPN options available that protect your identity.

Where Is Incognito History Stored?

Now that we’ve established that your browsing history is recorded even while surfing incognito, let’s look into where exactly it’s stored.

Depending on your settings, some of your activity might get logged into the My activity section on Google Chrome. However, if you want to see all of your incognito activity, you can do so by accessing your incognito history through DNS queries, as it is all stored there.

How to View Incognito History

To view your incognito history, you’ll have to follow a few steps relating to the DNS server. DNS queries are stored in Windows devices and can easily be accessed to provide you with your incognito history.

A DNS or Domain name system server is a device that records IP addresses and their hostnames. When you open a website, the browser checks the DNS server and the IP address of the website. To view your incognito history, you just have to read the DNS results since they are recorded even in incognito mode.

Here is how you access the DNS server on Windows.

Step 1: Open Incognito Mode and Visit a Website

To see incognito history, you should first open the incognito mode and visit any website so you can have a reference when checking the browsing history later.

Step 2: Look for Command Prompt

The next step is to look for the command prompt by clicking the Windows icon button on the right of your screen.

Step 3: Run Command Prompt

Once you find the Windows command prompt or Cmd, you should run it as an administrator.

Step 4: Type the Instructions

When you run the command prompt as an administrator, a black DOS window will open up, where you’ll have to type ipconfig/displaydns>any location\filename. For example, if you want to save results in a text file called ‘Pentonic123.txt’ in the C drive, you’ll type ipconfig/displaydns>C:\pentonic123.txt.

Step 5: Go to C Drive to View Results

Once you’ve typed in the command, close the command prompt. To view the incognito browsing history, go to C drive and find the pentonic123.txt to see the recent website visits in incognito mode.

When it comes to browsing history on your Android devices, you can access it by downloading the ‘Off the record History’ Chrome extension.

To view your browsing history on Safari or iOS, go to your settings. There, click on Safari and then on Advanced settings. You will see an option for Website data and by clicking on it you will be able to see your browsing history.

Although these steps will likely help you, retrieving your browsing history can be tedious even after following them. If you’re concerned about your privacy, either start using the top VPNs as many of them are quite secure,  change your IP address altogether, or rely on some of Apple’s privacy-promising labels.

Did You Know: There are certain third-party applications that engage in incognito web tracking. You must check your device regularly for such apps or use a VPN router to protect your identity.

How to Delete the Incognito History

The steps for deleting incognito history are simple but a bit different for Windows and macOS users.

Delete Incognito History on a Windows Device

To clear data in incognito or privacy mode on a Windows device, follow the steps below.

Step 1: Open Command Prompt

Like accessing browsing history, deleting it also requires you to open the command prompt by clicking the bottom right corner of your Windows screen and searching for it, making sure you run it as an administrator.

Step 2: Type in the Command

Once you open the command prompt, type in ipconfig/flushdns.
This will delete all DNS entries, and no one will be able to see them even though the DNS cache.

Delete Incognito History on macOS

The steps to delete incognito history are a bit different on macOS. Here is a step-by-step guide.

Step 1: Open the Terminal

To do so, you must first click on Go on your macOS and then click on Utilities, where you’ll find the Terminal option.

Step 2: Type the Command

After you click on the terminal option, a command window will open. In this window, you have to type: sudo dscacheutil –flushcache;sudo killall –HUP mDNSResponder.
Then, input the system’s password.

Did You Know: DNS leaks can allow DNS requests to be revealed to ISP DNS servers. It is a major security threat that can even lead to identity theft, but you can protect your privacy with a good antivirus.

Wrap Up

Even when we surf the internet in incognito mode, our browsing history gets recorded because incognito mode simply keeps you private on the internet. With a bit of effort, web tracking and gaining access to browsing history is possible even in incognito mode. However, you can delete your incognito history in a few simple steps that will clear all your personal data from DNS.


Who can see your incognito history?

Your Internet Service Provider, your employer, school, and any parental tracking software can access your tab history even in incognito mode.

Can you see incognito history on the router?

Yes, incognito history is available through the router’s logging function.

Does incognito save history?

Yes, it can save history, but you can delete it easily if you know how to delete incognito history.

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