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4 Tips To Browse More Securely With Safari Browser

Tuesday, July 29th, 2014

Safari is the default web browser for Mac computers and iOS based devices (iPads and iPhones). The browser commands a significant percentage of mobile browser market share (over 60%) but it is not very popular on desktops. Although Safari includes several built-in security features (blocking of suspicious websites, sandboxing of plugins etc.); you can do a lot more to keep your online sessions safe and secure. This article will suggest several tips on how you can browse safely with the Safari browser.

1) Use Private Browsing

The private browsing mode available with Apple Safari is a great way of preventing the browser and OS from storing your browsing history. By default, Safari’s browsing sessions are public so the browser keeps track of your searches, browsing history, form data and even caches content for future use. However, when you enable the Private Browsing mode (by clicking on Safari -> Private Browsing), Safari stops tracking your online sessions plus it deletes all cookies and temporary internet files as soon as you close the browser. But it must also be remembered that the Private Browsing mode is not the answer to keeping your browsing activities protected from ISPs and network administrators. If you want to protect your browsing sessions from surveillance and monitoring then it would be a good idea to sign up for a privacy service such as a Virtual Private Network.

Apart from using the Private Browsing mode, you can also request websites and search engines not to track your browsing activities. To enable this feature, Click on Safari -> Preferences and then on “Tell websites not to track me” in the Privacy tab.

2) Enable Security And Privacy Features

Apple Safari provides several optimize to customize the browser security as per your needs. For instance, it is possible to disable scripts and automatic opening of downloaded files as well as stop accepting cookies from third party and marketing sites. To disable potentially unsafe scripts from running automatically, click on Safari -> Preferences and then deselect the checkboxes next to “Enable plug-ins”, “Enable Java” and “Enable JavaScript”. To stop accepting cookies from third party sites, click on “Block cookies from third parties and advertisers” in the privacy tab. Finally, to stop Safari from opening files after downloading, navigate to the General tab in the Preferences window and then uncheck the checkbox next to “Open safe files after downloading”.

3) Safari Extensions

Safari extensions are nothing but plugins created by third parties to enhance the functionality of the browser. Although the Apple ecosystem is considered a lot more secure than the Microsoft and Android marketplaces, it makes sense to evaluate the extensions for security issues before using them. You can find more about a particular extension by reading its review online.

4) Keep Safari and OS up-to-date

Apart from tweaking the browser’s security settings, it is also essential to keep your OS (iOS or OSX) as well as Safari up-to-date. Apple releases security updates for its products from time to time so you must download and install them when they become available to remain safe from the newly discovered security threats.

July 29, 2014

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