Can WiFi Owner See What Sites Visited Incognito?

Does Incognito mode actually keep your browsing private? Is it safe to provide login information and personal details? Or is it possible for the Internet Service Provider or WiFi owner to see your browsing history?

While browsing online, it’s important to protect your identity and personal/financial data from theft. But nowadays, with so many fraud cases, these questions can give you real privacy threats.

If you want to browse privately, here’s everything to learn about Incognito mode and what happens when you connect to the public WiFi.

What is Incognito Mode?

Incognito mode is a built-in privacy feature of a browser that lets you browse the internet privately and prevents the browser from saving your online activities.

When you go Incognito, the browser doesn’t store local data on your computer to retrieve late. Once you exit the mode, it deletes cookies, site data, browsing history, permissions and information entered in forms.

Therefore, if you’re using someone else’s computer to browse online, it’s recommended to enable Incognito mode. Thus, the next person using the device can’t track your browsing details.

However, some of your information and activities still might be visible to others. For example, your location, websites you visit or sign in, saved bookmarks etc., are not hidden by Incognito.

Can WiFi Owner See What Sites Visited Incognito?

The answer is Yes. WiFi owner can see what sites you visited Incognito on their servers.

Incognito mode cannot control internet traffic, which is the amount of data flowing between the computer and router. Therefore, the websites can view your IP address and identify the device and the Wireless Internet Service Provider (WISP) can track your website activities.

There are three types of network protocols WiFi owners need to follow. Let’s understand how these protocols work, so you can know if the WiFi owner is monitoring your browsing activities.

1. Home Network

Your local Internet Service Provider (ISP) is responsible for the home network. Therefore, it is the safest network for browsing as it only provides internet for the household.

The home network doesn’t restrict or monitor your browsing. So, you can securely browse with or without incognito mode because the WiFi owner can’t see which website you visited.

You can also use Virtual Private Network (VPN) to create an extra layer of security for your internet browsing. Although there is a chance of slowing down the internet speed over VPN, it provides the safest internet experience.

2. Public Network

A public network is a common server you can find in public places such as libraries, shopping malls, metro stations etc. It is managed by the network administrator of that specific area.

For instance, if you’re using free WiFi at a cafeteria, you can only access it within the cafe.

Unfortunately, public WiFi connection is not secured and can cause severe security breaches. The other users or scammers may read your data and use it to impersonate you or send malware into your device to hack details.

Therefore, public network admins only allow limited internet access like emails, social media sites etc. But still, it’s better to stay aware and not to make any online transactions or enter sign-in details.

3. Office and School Network

As offices and schools have a huge no. of internet users, they generally use their own servers to provide a network connection. They take extra security measurements to offer the best internet services to their staff.

The IT personnel in such organizations are designated to monitor and maintain the computer security system. They install, upgrade and troubleshoot the IT infrastructure, ensure security against hackers and scammers, control network traffic congestion etc.

In order to protect the system, many schools and offices block access to some websites containing inappropriate or illegal content. Hence, be careful while browsing Incognito mode on your office or a school computer to avoid any trouble.

How to Hide Browsing History from WiFi Owner

In order to hide browsing history from WiFi owner, follow the quick tips below:

  • Use a Virtual Private Network or VPN.
  • Change your DNS server settings.
  • Download and install HTTPS Everywhere.
  • Connect to a WPA2 protected network.
  • Turn off auto-fill on search engines.
  • Browse anonymously with the Tor network.

Now you know in which cases WiFi owners can spy on your browsing activities. So, be mindful while doing something in Incognito and keep yourself secured from prying eyes.

About Ady Wilson

Ady Wilson is a technical writer/blogger with years of experience passionate about the latest trends. He is a true tech-enthusiast and loves to explain how different tech products work and what to do when they stop working. He mainly covers topics on troubleshooting guides, Games and app comparisons for Android, iOS and Windows. When Ady isn’t writing, he spends his time playing games like Fifa, Call of Duty etc., on Xbox One.

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