These settings can be accessed through Chrome’s “Advanced Settings” menu or by navigating to “chrome://settings/.”
- Enable phishing and malware protection: Make sure that Chrome’s phishing and malware protection feature is enabled under the “Privacy” section. This feature will warn you if a site you’re trying to visit may be phishing or contain malware.
- Turn off instant search: The Instant search feature should be turned off for optimal security. While it offers some convenience in searching, having this feature enabled means that anything you type in the address bar is instantly sent to Google.
- Don’t sync: Disconnect your email account from your browser under the “Personal Stuff” tab. Syncing your email account with your Chrome browser means that personal information such as passwords, autofill data, preferences, and more is stored on Google’s servers. If you must use sync, select the “Encrypt all synced data” option and create a unique passphrase for encryption.
- Configure content settings: Click “Content settings” under the “Privacy” section and do the following:
- Cookies: Select “Keep local data only until I quit my browser” and “Block third-party cookies and site data.” These options ensure that your cookies will be deleted upon quitting Chrome and that advertisers will not be able to track you using third-party cookies.
- Pop-ups: Select “Do not allow any site to show pop-ups.
- Location: Select “Do not allow any site to track my physical location.”
- Configure passwords and forms settings: Disable Autofill and deselect “Offer to save passwords I enter on the web” under the “Passwords and forms” section. Doing so will prevent Chrome from saving your logins, passwords, and other sensitive information that you enter into forms.
Choose Safari > Preferences, click Privacy, then do any of the following:
- Always block cookies: Select “Block all cookies.”Websites, third parties, and advertisers can’t store cookies and other data on your Mac. This may prevent some websites from working properly.
- Remove stored cookies and data: Click Manage Website Data, select one or more websites, then click Remove or Remove All.Removing the data may reduce tracking, but may also log you out of websites or change website behavior.
- See which websites store cookies or data: Click Manage Website Data.
- Ask websites not to track you: Some websites keep track of your browsing activities when they serve you content, which enables them to tailor what they present to you. You can have Safari ask sites and their third party content providers (including advertisers) not to track you.With this option turned on, each time Safari fetches content from a website, Safari adds a request not to track you, but it’s up to the website to honor this request.
These settings can be accessed through the “Options” menu.
- Configure privacy settings: Under the “Privacy” tab, complete the following steps. These measures ensure that Firefox is storing only as much of your information as it needs to function normally.
- Select “Use custom settings for history.”
- Deselect “Remember my browsing and download history.”
- Deselect “Remember search and form history.”
- Deselect “Accept third-party cookies.”
- Set cookie storage to “Keep until I close Firefox.”
- Select “Clear history when Firefox closes.”
- Configure security settings: Under the “Security” tab, choose the following settings. These steps prevent Firefox from saving your passwords and keep you from visiting potentially harmful sites.
- Verify that “Warn me when sites try to install add-ons,” “Block reported attack sites,” and “Block reported web forgeries” are all selected.
- Deselect “Remember passwords for sites.”
- Enable pop-up blocking: Verify that “Block pop-up windows” is selected under the “Content” tab. This feature should be turned on by default as it protects users from unwarranted advertisements and windows.
- Don’t sync: Avoid using Firefox Sync. By doing so you prevent Firefox from storing your logins, passwords, and other sensitive information.
- Turn on automatic updates: Verify that “Automatically install updates” is selected in the “Update” tab under “Advanced.” Doing so will ensure that your browser receives critical security updates. Verify that “Automatically update Search Engines” is selected as well.
- Use secure protocols: Verify that “Use SSL 3.0” and “Use TLS 1.0” are selected in the “Encryption” tab under “Advanced.”
These settings can be accessed through the “Internet Options” menu.
- Configure security settings: Under the “Security” tab, do the following:
- Set security zones: IE offers the option to configure different security settings for different “zones,” including the Internet, local intranet, trusted sites, and restricted sites. Set up the zones for Intranet, Trusted Sites, and Restricted sites to your desired security level.
- Set Internet zone security to “Medium High” or higher. This blocks certain cookie types, enables ActiveX filtering, and implements several other default settings for increased security.
- Automatically clear history: Select “Delete browsing history on exit” under the “General” tab. Clearing your history at the end of each session helps to limit the amount of information IE saves when you browse.
- Configure privacy settings: Under the “Privacy” tab, complete the following steps:
- Privacy setting: Set the Internet zone privacy to “Medium High” or higher. This blocks certain cookie types to prevent sites from tracking or contacting you without your consent.
- Location: Select “Never allow websites to request your physical location.”
- Pop-up Blocker: Double check that Pop-up Blocker is enabled.
- Configure Advanced Security settings: Scroll down to the “Security” section under the “Advanced” tab and do the following:
- Ensure that all default settings are in place. If you aren’t sure, click “Restore advanced settings” before making any other changes.
- Select “Do not save encrypted pages to disk.” This will delete files cached from HTTPS pages when the browser is closed.
- Select “Empty Temporary Internet Files folder when browser is closed.” This prevents IE from storing your personal info (logins, passwords, activity, etc) beyond your browsing session.
- Turn off autoComplete: The AutoComplete feature should be turned off for forms and usernames/passwords. Keeping AutoComplete turned off ensures that your sensitive information isn’t being stored unnecessarily.
- Tracking protection: IE’s Tracking Protection feature keeps your browsing private from specified third-party websites. This feature can be accessed through IE’s “Safety” menu. In order to use Tracking Protection you will need to provide a Tracking Protection List that names all of the sites you don’t want your information being sent to. You can create a list yourself or download lists online.