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Google Chrome tool lets you delete data websites have on you
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Technology

Want to wipe out what a website knows about you? You can in Chrome

Google’s popular Chrome browser has entered the year with a new update. Before it celebrates its 100th version (and breaks websites in the process), it added some useful privacy settings.

When you visit any website, a host of data is stored about you in what is known as cookies. These contain details like the browser version, the computer you are using, and the login details. It is possible to delete these cookies, but it can be laborious.

The new update, however, has made that a lot easier. Read on for how the latest Chrome update incorporates better privacy controls.

Here’s the backstory

Released a few days ago and in the process of being rolled out worldwide, Chrome 97 packs a bit of a punch in terms of new privacy features and bug fixes. The most exciting change is how you can control which details websites can store on you.

In previous browser versions, you could delete individual cookies from a website. If you visit a website often, there could be a lot of cookies that each need to be deleted manually. But now, through an update to the Privacy and Security settings, you can delete all the cookies from a website at once.

The update also fixed several security flaws and patched 37 vulnerabilities. Thankfully, only one of the flaws has been marked as Critical, while there are a couple of High severity exploits and a handful of Medium.

What you can do about it

It is always a good idea to keep your browser up to date with the latest version. Open the browser and click on the three-dot menu in the top right corner to do this for Chrome.

Hover your mouse over Help and select About Chrome. If the update is available for you, the browser will automatically start downloading and installing the latest version. You’ll need to refresh your browser once it’s installed.

To use the new cookie delete function:

  • Open your Chrome browser after installing the latest update.
  • Click on the three-dot menu button and then click Settings.
  • In the left panel, click on Security and Privacy.
  • From the options displayed, click on Site Settings
  • Under Recent Activity, click on View permissions and data stored across sites.

This will display a list of all the websites you have accessed, sorted by the most visited. By clicking on the drop-down arrow on the right, you can see the individual cookies stored by the website.

You can dig a bit deeper into what the website has access to by clicking on the arrow. This will list things like your location, camera or microphone. These permissions can be revoked and the cookie deleted.

To remove all the cookies for one website, click on the three-dot menu next to the website’s name and click on Clear data. Tap the Clear button on the pop-up menu to confirm.

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