Cover your tracks

Please take a few minutes to read the warning below and to take steps to increase your safety when using the internet and the Women's Aid website.

E-mail:
If your home computer automatically logs on to email using Outlook Express or a similar email client, it may be difficult to keep your incoming and outgoing email private. You can create a free internet email account with a provider such as www.hotmail.com. A benefit of this is that you can check your email from a friend's computer or one in a public place. If you check email using this method at home, you can clear the browser's memory afterwards (see detailed instructions below).

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.

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 or empty your cache file in your browser's settings .

Internet Explorer 7.0

1. Click Start and select Settings, then Control Panel.
2. Double-click Internet Options.
3. Click the General tab.
4. Click Delete under the Browsing History section.
5. Click Delete Files in the Delete Browsing History dialog box.
6. Click OK and Close the window.

Internet Explorer 6.0

1. Click Start and select Settings, then Control Panel.
2. Double-click Internet Options to open Internet Properties.
3. Click Delete Files.
4. Click OK on the Delete Files dialog box.
5. Click OK.

Internet Explorer 5.0 for Mac

1. Open Internet Explorer.
2. Click Edit and select Preferences.
3. Click the arrow beside Web Browser.
4. Click Advanced.
5. Click Empty Now.
6. Click Ok.

Firefox 3

1. Click Tools and select "Clear Private Data"
2. Check the "cache" box (uncheck others if you don't want to affect other settings).
3. Click the "Clear Private Data Now" button.

Firefox 2.0

1. Click Tools and select Options.
2. Click the Privacy icon.
3. Click Clear Now in the Private Data area.
4. Click Ok.

Firefox 2.0 for Mac

1. Open Firefox.
2. Click the Firefox menu and select Preferences.
3. Click the Advanced icon and click the Network tab.
4. Click Clear Now under the Cache section.
5. Close the window.

Firefox 1.0

1. Click Tools and select Options.
2. Click the Privacy Icon.
3. Click Clear across from the Cache option.
4. Click Ok.

Safari

1. Open Safari.
2. Select Empty Cache.
3. Click Empty when it asks you "Are you sure?"

America Online (AOL) (8 & 9)

1. Click Start, select Settings and Control Panel.
2. Double-click Internet Options to open Internet Properties.
3. Click Delete Files.
4. Click OK on the Delete Files dialog box.
5. Click OK.

Using the techniques above will help cover your tracks, but the safest way to find information on the internet is at a library, internet cafe, friend's house, or at work.