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How to Delete Safari History on Your Mac

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Last updated: September 11, 2023

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Navigating the digital world often leaves a trail in the form of browser history. While this history can be useful for quick access to frequently visited websites, it can also pose privacy and security risks.

If you’re a Mac user who relies on Safari as your go-to web browser, you may be wondering how to effectively delete your browsing history to protect your personal information. In this guide, I’ll walk you through the simple steps to delete Safari history on your Mac and browse the web with peace of mind.

Before We Begin

Deleting your browser history is just one method for enhancing your online privacy and security. Another option is to use MacKeeper’s Private Connect VPN, which safeguards both your personal data and your location when you’re online.

How to Clear All Safari History Manually

Clearing your Safari history manually is a straightforward process that you can accomplish in just a few steps. Doing so can protect your privacy and even speed up your browsing experience.

Here’s how to delete Safari history on your Mac manually and in one go:

  1. Launch the Safari application by clicking its icon in the Dock or by finding it in the Applications folder.
open safari on your mac
  1. Once Safari is open, navigate to the menu bar, click History, and select Clear History… from the dropdown. It’s at the bottom of the menu and you may have to scroll down.
click history in the menu bar and select clear history
  1. A dialog box will appear asking you to specify the time range for which you want to delete history. You can select last hour, today, today and yesterday, or all history.
choose a time range to clear safari history
  1. Select all history from the menu and click the Clear History button. This will also clear your browser cache and cookies for the specified time range.
click the clear history button
  1. For the changes to take effect, close all Safari windows and relaunch the application.

How to Clear Specific Pages From Safari History

If you prefer to delete specific items rather than clear your entire history, Safari also allows you to do that. Here’s how to delete Safari history on your Mac for specific pages:

  1. Launch the Safari application by clicking its icon in the Dock or by finding it in the Applications folder.
open safari on your mac
  1. Once Safari is open, navigate to the menu bar, click History and select Show All History.
click history and select show all history
  1. A window will display your entire browsing history. Simply right-click the individual site(s) you wish to remove and select Delete.
right click a history item and select delete
  1. Alternatively, you can click the Clear History button and it will open the window to select a time range and you can clear all Safari history.
click clear history

Remember, clearing your history will also log you out of any websites where you’ve signed in, so you’ll need to log back in the next time you visit those sites.

How to Clear Safari History and Cookies Automatically

Automatically clearing your Safari history and cookies can be a real time-saver and adds an extra layer of privacy and security to your browsing experience. By setting this up, you won’t have to manually clear your history each time you exit Safari.

Here’s how to clear Safari history and cookies automatically on your Mac:

  1. Launch Safari by clicking its icon in the Dock.
open safari on your mac
  1. Click Safari in the menu bar at the top of the screen and select Settings.
click safari and select settings
  1. Select the Privacy tab and check the box for Block all cookies next to Cookies and website data.
check the block all cookies check box

Note that doing so might cause some websites to not work correctly.

Another way to automatically clear history and cookies on Safari is to use Private Browsing mode. To enable this, open Safari, go to the File menu, and select New Private Window.

click file and selecte new private window

While in this mode, Safari won’t save your browsing history or cookies.

Using Private Browsing mode or blocking all cookies can affect the functionality of some websites. You might not be able to log in or access certain features in such cases.

How to Clear Cookies and Cache in Safari

Clearing cookies and cache in Safari can improve your browsing speed, solve website issues, and enhance your privacy and security. Here’s how to clear cookies in Safari:

  1. Start by launching the Safari application from your Dock or your Applications folder.
  2. Click Safari in the menu bar at the top of the screen and select Settings.
click safari and select settings
  1. Select the Privacy tab and click the Manage Website Data button.
select the privacy tab and tap the manage website data button
  1. Click Remove All to clear all website cookies completely.
click remove all
  1. If you choose to remove all cookies, you’ll be prompted to confirm. Click Remove Now to proceed.
  2. Alternatively, you can select individual websites and tap Remove.
select a website and click remove
  1. Click Done when you have deleted all cache files.

To delete Safari cache on your Mac, follow these steps:

  1. First, you’ll need to enable the Developer menu if it isn’t already. Go to Safari in the menu bar and select Settings.
click safari and select settings
  1. Select the Advanced tab and check the box next to the Show Develop menu in menu bar if it is unchecked.
check the box next to the show develop menu in menu bar
  1. Once the Develop menu is enabled, you’ll find it in the menu bar at the top of your screen. Click Develop in the menu bar and select Empty Caches from the dropdown menu.
click develop in the menu bar and select empty caches

This will clear all your Safari cache on Mac.

After you’ve cleared cookies and cache, it may be a good idea to close and relaunch Safari for the changes to take full effect.

Why Can’t You Delete Your History on Safari?

If you’re unable to delete your history on Safari, there could be several reasons for this issue. Below are some common factors and their potential solutions:

  1. 🚫 Restrictions or Parental Controls: If your Mac has been set up with parental controls or other user restrictions, these settings might disable the ability to clear Safari history. You would need administrative access to change these settings. Go to System Settings > Screen Time > Content & Privacy to make changes.
  2. 🚹 Corrupted User Profile: Sometimes, a corrupted user profile may lead to issues with Safari, including the inability to delete the history. Create a new user profile to see if the issue persists. If it doesn’t, you may have to transition to the new profile entirely.
  3. 🐞 Software Glitch: Occasional glitches can also cause this issue. Quitting and reopening Safari, or restarting your computer, might solve the problem.
  4. 🛡️ Third-Party Software Interference: Some third-party software, like security or parental control applications, can interfere with Safari’s normal operation. Disable or uninstall the third-party software temporarily to see if that resolves the issue.
  5. Outdated Safari Version: Using an outdated version of Safari may result in various operational issues, including the inability to delete history. Update Safari to the latest version via the App Store.
  6. ☁️ iCloud Syncing: If you’re using iCloud to sync Safari data across devices, there might be syncing issues causing the problem. Go to System Settings > Apple ID > iCloud and toggle off Safari syncing, then try to clear history again. You can toggle it back on afterward.
  7. 🔒 Lack of Administrative Privileges: In some cases, the logged-in user might not have the administrative rights necessary to clear browsing history. Log in as an administrator and try to clear the history.
  8. 🦠 Malware: It’s rare but possible that malware could be preventing you from deleting your history. Run a full virus scan on your Mac using reputable antivirus software and remove any threats detected.

Additional Privacy Tips for Safari Users

For Safari users who are keen on enhancing their online privacy, there are multiple ways to better protect your information and browsing habits. Here are some additional tips for boosting your privacy while using Safari:

  1. 🕶️ Use Private Browsing Mode: When you enable Private Browsing, Safari doesn’t save your search history, AutoFill information, or open tabs. To activate, simply open Safari, and go to File > New Private Window.
click file and selecte new private window
  1. 🍪 Manage Cookies and Website Data: Navigate to Safari > Settings > Privacy, where you can choose to block all cookies or manage data for specific websites.
check block all cookies or click manage website data
  1. 🚫 Enable “Prevent Cross-Site Tracking”: This feature blocks advertisers from collecting your browsing data across websites. Enable it from Safari > Settings > Privacy.
check prevent cross site tracking in privacy tab
  1. 🌐 Use a VPN Service: Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) mask your IP address, making your online actions virtually untraceable. Many reputable services offer Safari extensions.
  2. 📝 Disable AutoFill: To keep personal information like usernames and credit card numbers safe, disable AutoFill by going to Safari > Settings > AutoFill.
disable autofill options in safari settings
  1. 🔒 Customize Website Permissions: Control permissions for camera, microphone, and location for individual websites. Go to Safari > Settings > Websites to make adjustments.
website tab in safari settings
  1. 🔍 Turn Off Search Engine Suggestions: Disable this feature to prevent search engines from gathering your search queries. Navigate to Safari > Settings > Search to turn it off.
disable search engine suggestions in safari settings
  1. 🧩 Examine Browser Extensions: Not all browser extensions are secure. Make sure to review and manage your extensions by navigating to Safari > Settings > Extensions.
extensions tab in safari settings
  1. 🔑 Review and Manage Saved Passwords: Regularly update and manage saved passwords. Access this via Safari > Settings > Passwords.
passwords tab in safari settings
  1. ⚠️ Enable Fraudulent Website Warning: This feature warns you when you attempt to open a website that’s suspected of phishing. Turn it on by going to Safari > Settings > Security.
enable fraudulent website warning in safari settings

Browse Safely With MacKeeper Private Connect

Browsing safely online is essential for protecting your privacy and sensitive data. MacKeeper Private Connect VPN (Virtual Private Network) provides additional security and privacy while surfing the web.

Here are the steps to use MacKeeper’s Private Connect VPN:

  1. Download and install MacKeeper on your Mac.
  2. Open the MacKeeper app on your Mac and click Private Connect under the Privacy section.
click the private connect feature under the privacy section
  1. Select a server location from the list provided. You can choose a server in your country for faster browsing or another country to bypass geo-restrictions.
select server location from provided list
  1. Click Turn On to activate Private Connect VPN.
click turn on to activate private connect vpn
  1. Once connected, you should see a notification indicating your VPN connection is active. You can also check your IP address online to confirm the change.

Start browsing the web safely and securely. Your internet connection is now encrypted, and your online activities are private. When you’re done browsing, disconnect the VPN by clicking the Turn Off button.

What Else Can MacKeeper Do?

Besides providing a VPN, MacKeeper is a multifunctional utility software that offers various features necessary for online security. You can use MacKeeper to block annoying ads on your Mac, delete junk files, clear login items, and disable pop-ups on your Mac. If you want to learn more about its features, read my detailed MacKeeper review.

Delete Safari History on Your Mac

Now that you know how to delete Safari history on your Mac, you can declutter your browser and boost its performance. For an even better online experience, consider these additional suggestions:

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Why should I clear my Safari browsing history?

    You should clear your Safari browsing history to enhance online privacy by removing traces of websites you’ve visited. It also boosts browser performance by freeing up memory and storage space. Additionally, clearing history helps protect sensitive information, like login credentials or search queries.

  2. How often should I clear my Safari history?

    The frequency of clearing your Safari history depends on your personal needs and security concerns. Some users prefer to clear it daily for maximum privacy, while others do it weekly or monthly to balance convenience and security. Regularly clearing your history helps maintain privacy and optimizes browser performance.

  3. Will clearing my Safari history make my Mac run faster?

    Clearing your Safari history can improve browser performance by freeing up memory and reducing clutter. While it may not significantly speed up your entire Mac system, it can make your web browsing experience smoother and more efficient, especially if you haven’t cleared your history for an extended period.

Hashir Ibrahim

Author

I'm Hashir, a tech journalist with a decade of experience. My work has been featured in some of the top tech publications like MakeUseOf and MakeTechEasier. I have a bachelor's degree in IT, a master's in cybersecurity, and extensive knowledge of Apple hardware, specifically MacBooks. As the senior writer at MacBook Journal, I write in depth guides that help you solve any issues you have with your mac and unbiased reviews that help you make the right buying decisions.

Ojash

Reviewer

Hi there! I'm Ojash, a tech journalist with over a decade of experience in the industry. I've had the privilege of contributing to some of the world's largest tech publications, making my mark as a respected Mac expert. My passion lies in exploring, using, and writing about MacBooks, and I enjoy sharing my expertise to help others make informed decisions and get the most out of their MacBook experience. Join me as we delve into the fascinating world of MacBooks together!

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