Find the incognito history of your private browsing on Chrome

Thinking of surfing incognito with private browsing? Well, think again, it is quite possible to recover incognito history on Google Chrome.

Private browsing, offered by most web browsers, promises you to surf incognito, without keeping any traces. This is how it works, and no matter how hard you dig into every corner of your history after a session like this, you won’t find any traces of your browsing.

But sorry to disappoint you, all the tasks you do in this session are still accessible through various means.

Here I will show you how easy it is to find private browsing history on Google Chrome without installing any software. For this, we will only use the Windows command prompt.

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Analyze DNS cache

Information about the sites you visit is stored in the domain name server cache files.

What is DNS caching exactly?

Each time you type the name of a site, Windows retrieves the IP address and other corresponding information from your Internet Service Provider then it stores them in a file called the “DNS cache”.

So, the next time you visit one of the previously visited sites, the browser will not load it from scratch but rather retrieve the data from that DNS cache, thereby speeding up the loading of the site.

And yes! As you can see, we can read the data associated with this cache file so we can retrieve all the required information.

Recover private browsing history with DNS cache?

As explained in the previous paragraphs, recovering your browsing history can be done on your Windows PC using DNS cache and command prompt.

Here are the steps to follow:

  • Go to the Start menu, find Command Prompt, and launch it as administrator.
Windows 10 command prompt
© funinformatique
  • Now type the command below and hit enter.

ipconfig / displaydns

  • This will list all the domain names, their IP address, and some other information.
Windows 10 command prompt
© funinformatique
  • For readability, I recommend that you save this information in a file. To do this, enter the following command:

ipconfig / displaydns> Drive: \ filename.txt

For example, to save this information in drive D: and in the histories.txt file , type the above command:

ipconfig /displaydns>D:\historiques.txt

Windows 10 command prompt
© funinformatique

It was therefore the best method to find the history of incognito mode in the Chrome browser.

Let’s see a second method as reliable as the first, but more difficult to achieve.

Recover Incognito History from Router

Most routers keep a log of all websites visited . Although your web browser is in Incognito mode, the router may have kept a history of all the websites you have visited.

In this case, you can find the history of private browsing by accessing the administration interface of your router.

To do this, follow these steps:

  • Launch your Chrome or Firefox web browser on your computer.
  • Enter the IP address of your router in the address bar. For most routers, the default IP address is 192.168.0.1. If that doesn’t work, you can try 192.168.1.1 or 192.168.100.1.
  • Enter the router’s admin username and password. You will find them on the back of the Box.
  • Now at the admin interface select Logs or Admin> Logs.
  • Finally, you will find in this section all the websites visited (normal mode and private mode).

Conclusion

So these were the two different methods to find Incognito browsing history in Chrome browser. Although the two workarounds vary, in my case viewing DNS records does the trick.

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Finally, to surf incognito, really, the only practical solution remains the VPN. Only a virtual private network can encrypt your data, and make you anonymous. The one I use and recommend to you is  HideMyass.

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