Delete your search history on social networks and your browsers

If you share a computer with other members of your household, it can be difficult to keep a surprise vacation or gift a secret. Saved searches, in particular, can give you away.

After all, if your web browser defaults to Expedia every time someone types an “E,” your plans will be discovered. Are you going on a trip soon? Tap or click here for travel safety tips. In addition, saved searches consume memory on your hard drive.

So how are you going to clear your search history? Did you know you can do this for your favorite browser and social media sites? We’ll tell you how, starting with Facebook.


Facebook likes to keep tabs on you, including your search history, to show you targeted ads. To maintain some semblance of privacy on the site and app, follow the steps below to clear your Facebook search history on your computer:

  • Go to and log in.
  • Press the down arrow in the upper right corner.
  • Select Settings and privacy > Activity Log.
  • Click it Registered actions and other activities option.
  • Select Search history.
  • You’ll now see a list of all the searches you’ve done on Facebook so far. To delete this history, choose Clear searches.
    • If you want to delete single items from the search history instead of your entire history at once, click the three points to the right of each search in the history list and tap Wipe off. A menu will appear to confirm. Hit Wipe off Again. It will just delete that search.


Twitter also keeps track of your search history. It can help you find profiles you search for often, or it can be annoying and reveal information you don’t want others to know.

To delete your Twitter search history:

  • On a web browser, log in to your Twitter profile.
  • Click on the Search Twitter bar in the upper right corner of the screen. A list of your recent searches will appear.
  • Press the X next to individual searches to delete them one by one.
  • To clear all your searches at once, click Erase everything at the top of the menu.

To clear your mobile search history on Twitter:

  • Log into the Twitter app on your smartphone or tablet and tap the Look for tab at the bottom of the screen. It’s the tab with the magnifying glass icon.
  • Press the Search Twitter bar at the top to view your recent searches.
  • Press the X in the circle to the right of Recent searches and press Clear to clear all your recent searches.
  • To remove individual searches, swipe left on a search in the list and tap Wipe off.
    • You can delete searches by term, but you won’t be able to delete recent profiles you’ve searched for without erasing your entire search history.


Facebook owns Instagram, so it also likes to keep track of your data. Again, this can be handy, but it’s good to clear your search data once in a while to save space on your phone or browser and maintain some privacy.

Since Instagram is more often used as an app than on a browser, let’s see how to clear its search history from the mobile app:

  • Open and log in to the Instagram app.
  • Tap on your profile (the tab at the bottom of the screen that has a circular icon of your profile picture) and tap on the icon of three lines on top of each other in the upper right part of the screen.
  • Faucet Your activity.
  • Faucet recent searches.
  • Faucet Erase everythingthen touch Erase everything to confirm.

Your Instagram search history is like your Facebook search history. If you clear searches on mobile or your browser, you will clear it in the other.

Google Chrome

Google Chrome exists on computers and mobile devices, and deleting search history is basically the same on both. If your devices sync to only one cloud, deleting your Chrome search history on one of them will delete the history of all:

  • Open Google Chrome on your computer and click on the After menu, the three dots superimposed at the top right of the browser.
  • Pass the mouse over the Story menu, then click the Story option at the top.
  • To remove individual searches, click the box to the left of each search listing and click Wipe off in the upper right part of the window.
  • To delete your entire search history at once, click Clear browsing data in the left menu and select the data you want to delete – just your browsing history or also your cookies and cache. Click it Erase data button once you’ve decided.
    • To note: You will free up more memory space and get more privacy by erasing everything.

Google also lets you delete your search history. Tap or click here to clear your search history from the Google website.


To clear your search history in Firefox:

  • Open Firefox and click on the three-line menu.
  • Click on Storythen Clear recent history… to delete all your recent search data.
  • A box will appear asking for the time frame to clear (last hour, last two hours, current day, all, etc.). Choose your period and click clear now.
  • To remove items one at a time, click Storythen Show all history.
    • You will get a list of all your recent searches. Right click on what you don’t want and select Forget this site.


To clear your search history in Edge:

  • Open Edge and click Settings and more… then Settings in the browser.
  • Click on Privacy and Services and find Clear browsing data.
  • Select Choose what to erase and choose a time range of data to delete from the Time interval scrolling menu. We suggest doing everything.
  • Next, select the type of data you want to clear – only search history, cookies, cache, even passwords and form-filling data.
    • You’ll probably want to save passwords and form-fill data unless you’d rather enter everything by hand for security reasons.
  • Click on clear now and this data will be erased.


To clear your search history in Safari on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch:

  • To clear your history and cookies, go to Settings > Safariand touch Clear history and website data. Clearing your history, cookies, and browsing data from Safari won’t change your AutoFill information.
  • To delete your cookies and keep your history, go to Settings > Safari > Advanced > Website datathen touch Delete all website data.

Keep your next giveaway a surprise on a shared computer by clearing search history on your browsers and social networks. Tap or click here if you’re curious about the real reason why Google lets you delete your search history.

Your computer and mobile devices will have more memory space and you will also keep your data more private. So clear your search history regularly and maintain some privacy while browsing online.

Daniel C. Williams