You may not be aware that your computer stores information about your internet usage that is readily accessible even with the most basic technical knowledge. It may therefore be of assistance to read the following:Email
By using a secure, password protected email account you should be able to protect your privacy. However, pages viewed through, say, Hotmail accounts are stored in your computer's cache memory and can be seen offline either by accessing your browser's history or accessing files directly on your hard drive from the "temporary internet files" folder. You may therefore choose to protect your privacy further if your computer is used by others.History or Cache Memory
Cache memory stores information on pages (files) you have viewed recently on the internet. To protect your privacy you may choose to delete history and cache memory. How you do this depends on the browser you are using:Internet Explorer
To delete cache memory select Tools then Internet Options. On the general tab adjust the number of days history, alternatively to delete history click on the "clear history" button.AOL
Select the Customise menu at the top of the screen, then Preferences. In the window that then appears click on "internet properties WWW". A similar window to Internet Explorer opens and again you can either adjust the number of days history or clear the cache memory by clicking on "clear history".Netscape
To clear history, click on Communicator, then Tools then History menu. This will reveal a window showing all recently viewed pages. To delete them click on Edit then Select All, then again edit delete. To clear cache click on Edit then Preferences. In the new window click on "advanced" then "cache". You can then click on the buttons "clear memory cache" and "clear disk cache" as well as adjust the number of files stored (through adjusting the size of the memory used).
When deleting files you should also take the precaution of emptying your recycle bin on your desktop. If this is not done then deleted files are easily restored (before permantently deleting files ensure files in the bin have not first been deleted by accident!). Even having followed the above it can still possible to restore deleted files. Using software such as internet cleanup may therefore be helpful.
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Internet Cleanup - Who's Watching You Surf?
Internet Cleanup 4.0 removes the evidence of your internet activities:
Remove Spyware: Small programs known as "Spyware" can be installed on your hard drive when you download free software. These programs can then record your Internet activities and send the information back to the programs creator. Internet Cleanup can remove Spyware programs quickly and easily
Permanently Remove: Deleting files does not remove the data from your hard drive. New data must overwrite the old data first. Internet Cleanup completely overwrites data, rendering it unrecoverable by the most sophisticated undelete/data recovery tools.
Remove Recent Lists: Many applications keep lists of recently opened files for convenience. If you have opened files containing private content, you may not want them to appear in these lists--an easy way for someone snooping to discover them. Internet Cleanup provides common application plug-in modules to remove these lists and the ability to customize for your applications.
Remove History: When you surf the Internet, your browser stores the web addresses of the sites you visit on your hard drive. Anyone looking at your browser's History section or web address drop-down lists can see where you've been on the Internet.
Remove Cache: As you surf the Internet, your browser stores the contents of web pages you visit on your hard drive. Anyone with access to your computer can view images and web pages you've visited recently in your cached files.