You may have noticed something new recently if you use Google Chrome as your web browser. Whenever you open a new tab, that new tab page displays the Google search field. And right below that, there are a bunch of icons representing the websites you have recently visited. A lot of people don’t like that their web history is right out there on display for anyone within eyesight of the screen.
This is what it looks like:
A lot of people have complained about this, and yet Google has still left it to display that way by default. I don’t really understand that, because there doesn’t seem to be a way for Google to have any additional revenues by displaying this information.
Suppose you’re at work and your boss comes over and asks you to pull up a particular website. With him looking over your shoulder, you open a new tab, and there on display are all the sites you have been visiting recently – YouTube, Reddit, Craigslist (an added touch of embarrassment would be Craigslist showing the “Jobs” category).
Or maybe your wedding anniversary is coming up, and you want to buy your wife a nice new ring. And in a moment of carelessness, you open a new tab with her in view of the screen, and she sees Gordon’s Jewelers, Zale Jewelers, Tiffany & Company. Or even worse, the Craigslist “Used Jewelry” category.
This is something that can be avoided just by changing a simple setting in Chrome. Here’s how:
1. Open Google Chrome.
2. In the address bar, type: chrome:flags and hit Enter on your keyboard.
3. You’ll see a warning, and it’s one that you should pay attention to. Don’t hang around here very long – just finish the rest of the steps and exit.
4. Hit Ctrl + F to open a search window in the top right corner of the page, and type in Enable instant.
5. When you have typed that, you will see one of the entries on the page highlighted. Click the drop-down menu and choose “Disabled”.
6. Close the tab
Now close Chrome and open it again, and then open a new tab. It should look like this:
Nice! No Chrome web history on display!
But – the web history is still there if you do want to view it for easy access. See the little arrow on the left side, pointing to the left? Click that, and you’ll see those web history icons if you need to.