Refresh Your Android Phone’s Browser by Clearing Out Its Cache, Cookies – CNET

Your Android phone‘s web browser picks up a lot of data from all of the websites that you visit, and a lot of that does not need to be on your phone. Whether you’re using Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox or Samsung Internet, this data stored in your cookies and cache can be helpful in some cases. It’s what lets you quickly access websites you frequently access and keeps you logged into accounts you have. That’s nice, but there’s plenty of information in the cookies and cache of your browser that isn’t necessary and could even be a privacy risk.

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The "Clear browsing data" menu in Chrome on Android The

The “Clear browsing data” menu in Chrome on Android.

Screenshot by Mike Sorrentino/CNET

Google Chrome

You can delete your cookies and cache from within the Android version of Google Chrome by first tapping the More button in the top right corner of the browser, indicated by a column of three dots, then tapping History, then Clear browsing data. You can also access this from the Chrome Settings menu, tapping Privacy and Security and then Clear browsing data.

Chrome also offers Basic and Advanced settings for clearing your Browsing history, Cookies and site data and Cached images and files. You can use the Time range drop-down to select whether you want to delete the entire history or a selection of anywhere from the past 24 hours up to the last four weeks. Tapping Advanced will also give you access to deleting Saved passwords, Autofill form data and Site settings. After selecting what you want to delete, tap the blue Clear data button. You might receive an additional prompt in the event Chrome deems certain websites as being “important” to you, and if so you’ll get the chance to confirm before clearing. Otherwise, if you do not receive that prompt, Chrome will immediately proceed to clear as you instructed.

Read more: Ditch Google Chrome and Use This Privacy-Focused Browser Instead

Samsung Internet

The "Clear data" and "Clear cache" options for Samsung Internet The

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The "Delete browsing data" menu in Mozilla Firefox on Android The

The “Delete browsing data” menu in Mozilla Firefox on Android.

Screenshot by Mike Sorrentino/CNET

Of the three browsers we’re discussing here, Firefox gives you the most options under the Delete browsing data menu, allowing you to also delete any existing Open tabs, your Browsing history and site data, Site permissions and even your Downloads folder alongside Cookies and Cached images and files

While you can’t pick a time range as you can for Chrome, you can be more specific regarding what type of data you would like to remove.

Read more: Browser Privacy Settings to Change ASAP in Firefox, Chrome and Safari 

And Firefox has an additional option for those who never want to keep their browsing data after they’re done using the app. Inside Settings is a Delete browsing data on quit option, which instructs Firefox to wipe any combination of these same settings every time you quit the application. It’s a useful feature if you’d like to keep the browser tidy and, say, avoid accidentally handing off your browser history to someone who may have stolen or otherwise gained access to your phone.

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