What browser are you on? Chances are it’s Chrome, but perhaps you like to stand out a little and do things differently. According to Global Web Statistics, 63.3% of global users are on Chrome. Safari comes next at just over 14%, Internet Explorer at 6.9%, and Firefox at 6.1%.
Whatever your choice, the web browser you’re using to read this post has a password manager tool. It might even suggest a helpful way for you to save passwords for logging into sites faster in the future.
“Want me to remember this password for next time?”
Sure, you think, and click OK.
How helpful, Chrome. You are my friend, Firefox. Thanks for the help, Safari.
These built-in browser tools are lightweight versions of the password management tools offered by companies like LASTPASS and 1PASSWORD (which WE LIKE, by the way). It’s important to BE SMART WITH PASSWORDS, something we’ve mentioned in past posts. Most of us know the best way to handle our online accounts, but we don’t put that into action. According to YouGov, 22% of online users have the exact same password for most of their online logins, and 42% of users do that for some of their accounts. Combine that with the 6% that use one password for all accounts, and you have 70% of users reusing a password.
Using the browser password tool could be a good way for you to improve your password practices, but guess what? These helpful lightweight browser tools are being exploited! It’s important to know how to disable browser autocomplete.
PRINCETON’S CENTER FOR INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY POLICY published in-depth information about how third-party scripts comb through your personal data by snagging it from these built-in password managers. Yikes!
Here's a quick summary of what's happening:
Supposedly, the focus is on usernames, but “there’s no technical measure to stop scripts from collecting passwords the same way,” as RUSSELL BRANDOM WITH THE VERGE points out.
And guess what else? That data is also sold through a massive consumer data broker. Unfortunately, we’re not surprised. If you want to protect your privacy, you must be your own advocate.
Now you’re probably left wondering, “But how do I stop Google from autofilling?” or “How do I turn off autocomplete?” But fear not, we are here to help! We’ve provided step-by-step instructions on how to disable and clear autofill info for the four most common browsers: Chrome, Safari, Internet Explorer, and Firefox.
How to Disable Autofill in Chrome:
How to Clear Autofill Data in Chrome:
How to Disable Autofill in Safari:
How to Clear Autofill Data in Safari:
How to Disable Autofill in Internet Explorer:
How to Clear Autofill Data in Internet Explorer:
How to Disable Autofill in Firefox:
How to Clear Autofill Data in Firefox:
By ensuring that you have disabled and cleared your autofill, you will protect yourself from malicious hackers looking to profit off of your personal information. And as an added bonus: if someone were to hop on your computer without your permission, your sensitive data won’t be openly displayed to them either — that’s what we call a win/win!