Monday, January 21, 2013

Protect Your Privacy When Using Firefox in Presence of Others

Should someone arrive unannounced at your desk and ask you to show something in Firefox or want to borrow it for a while, will you comply? Are you sure your browser history is clean and there isn’t something you shouldn’t be viewing? Nothing is more embarrassing when you have people around, and you start typing an address in the URL bar and Firefox autocompletes it with the most inappropriate address from your bookmarks or history. How you wish you had time to delete your browser history before starting, or that you had never saved that website to Firefox’s bookmark.

You can avoid such embarrassments in future by making a small preparation – install Presentation Mode.

Presentation Mode is a simple add-on for Firefox that protects your privacy by allowing you to temporarily disable autocomplete, hide past searches, disable the New Tab Page and collapse the bookmarks bar before you start giving a presentation. This can be done with a simple click of a button and at short notice.


When you are in the middle of a browsing session, and someone arrives unexpectedly and you need to show something in your browser, just click on the red icon in the extreme right of the add-on bar to start the Presentation Mode. When this mode is enabled, Firefox saves all active tabs and closes the current browsing session and starts a new one. The new session has the following privacy settings enabled:

  • Autocomplete in the address bar is disabled. This prevents Firefox from showing your browsing history and bookmarks. Be aware that this extension doesn’t delete history which can be viewed from the history menu.
  • New Tab Page that reveals your top visited sites when a new tab is opened is disabled.
  • The bookmarks toolbar is automatically collapsed.
  • Clears the last searched text and disables search suggestions in search box.

To exit Presentation Mode, click on the button again and the previous browsing session is restored and privacy restrictions lifted.


  1. Any way to move the button off the Add-on bar? I've tried with the 'Customize' option that normally allows you to move stuff, and it moves the image, but then nothing happens when I click on it.

  2. You can move the icon to the address bar, if you want that. Otherwise, there seems to be no other way.

  3. try the extension UI Fixer

  4. I was using Firefox before but due to auto-save pages in it, I uninstalled it and now using Google Chrome but after reading this post, I am thinking to use Firefox again.

  5. I was using Firefox from last 3 years. It is still at No.1 in my computer. Because its features and protection of privacy policy.


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