Increase your online safety

Cheshire East Domestic Abuse Hub – 0300 123 5101

Please take a few minutes to read the warning below and to take steps to increase your safety when using the internet viewing websites.


If an abuser has access to your email account, they may be able to read your incoming and outgoing mail. If you believe your account is secure, make sure you choose a password that an abuser will not be able to guess.

If an abuser sends you threatening or harassing e-mail messages, they may be printed and saved as evidence of this abuse. The messages may constitute an offence.

Clear history / Cache File

If an abuser knows how to read your computer's history or cache file (automatically saved web pages and graphics), they may be able to see information you have viewed recently on the internet. You can clear your history, delete your cookies (small pieces of code which can track websites that you have visited) or empty your cache file in your browser's settings.


The information below may not completely hide your tracks. It is also possible for other people to install software on a computer which logs all activity including websites visited and text typed. Therefore, the safest way to find information on the internet is to do it in a safe place. This could be at a local library, a friend's house, or at work. If you do need to use a home computer, please see the information below which explains how you can take some steps to cover your online tracks.

Internet Explorer

For older versions of Internet Explorer (7 or earlier)

Pull down the view menu (tools menu in explorer 7) , select Internet Options. On General page, under Temporary Internet Files, click on "Delete Files". Under History click on "Clear History."

For more recent versions of Internet Explorer

For Internet Explorer 8 and later, pull down Tools and click on Delete Browsing History. Choose the information you wish to delete and press Delete. Alternatively, press and hold down the CTRL+SHIFT+DEL keys to bring up this menu.

You can also choose In Private browsing by going to Tools and then selecting InPrivateBrowsing (or by pressing CTRL+SHIFT+P). A new window then opens and you should use that window for browsing. When InPrivateBrowsing is activated, this prevents Internet Explorer from storing data about your browsing session. This includes cookies, temporary Internet files, history, and other data. Toolbars and extensions are disabled by default.


Pull down the Tools menu, select Clear recent history. You can then choose how much information to clear. Alternatively, choose 'clear everything'.


Click on the 'settings' button (which looks like an asterisk) at the top right of the browser. Scroll down to 'reset safari' and then click on 'reset' and this should clear all saved data.

Google Chrome

  1. Click the wrench icon on the browser toolbar. Google Chrome tools icon 
  2. Select Tools.
  3. Select Clear browsing data.
  4. In the dialog that appears, select the checkboxes for the types of information that you want to remove.
  5. Use the "Clear data from this period" menu to select the amount of data that you want to delete.
  6. Click Clear browsing data.

Mac users: If you don't see the wrench icon, you can go to the menu bar at the top of your screen and select Chrome > Clear Browsing Data to open the Clear Browsing Data dialog.

Further reading

Women’s Aid have additional advice on their website.

Page last reviewed: 17 September 2021

Contact details

Cheshire East Domestic Abuse Hub
Telephone: 0300 123 5101

In an emergency call 999

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