Remember you are not alone - domestic abuse can happen to anyone no matter your age, race, class, culture, disability, gender, sexuality or lifestyle.

How to stay safe and cover your tracks online

WARNING: If you are worried someone might monitor your activity when you are looking for help online, follow the steps below to protect yourself.

Close site button

No matter what page you are viewing on The Pankhurst Trust site, you can quickly exit by clicking on the Close Site button which can be found in the top right hand corner. This will immediately close your browser.

Define which internet browser you are using

Your internet browser is what you are using to view this page. If you know what browser you are using, skip to the relevant information below. If you don’t know which internet browser you are using go to the toolbar at the top of your browser screen. Click on Help. A drop down will appear and indicate which browser you are using; Safari, Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer are all potential options that might appear.

Private browsing options

Most web browsers have a “private browsing” mode that, once you’ve enabled it, ensures that all of your browsing history and any associated caches won’t be stored on the computer. Private browsing won’t stop online services seeing what you get up to, but your activity history will be safe.


Safari:                        Click File - Click “New Private Window”.

Chrome:                     Click the Menu button with three horizontal lines and select “New

Incognito Window”.


Firefox:                      Click the Menu button with three horizontal lines – “New Private



Internet Explorer:     Go to Safety – Tools – “InPrivate Browsing”.

Other browsers will have similar options.


Internet Explorer

Click on the Tools menu and select Internet Options. On the General page, under Temporary Internet Files, click on Delete Cookies and then OK. Click on Delete Files, put a tick in the box labelled Delete all offline content and click OK. Under History, click on Clear History and then OK. Now look at the top of the window and click on the Content tab, select AutoComplete and finally, Clear Forms.


Click on Tools and then Options, then click on Privacy. Click on the Clear button next to Cache and Saved Form Information.

Deleting your browsing history
Internet browsers also keep a record of all the web pages you visit. This is known as a ‘history’. To delete history for Internet Explorer and Firefox hold down the Ctrl key on the keyboard, then press the H key (Ctrl, Alt and H for Opera). Find any entries that say, right click and choose Delete.


There are a few steps you can take to protect yourself with regards to email. If someone is sending you threatening emails or messages, print them off and keep them as evidence. If you need evidence of messages you’ve sent, go to your Sent Messages folder. When you delete an email in your inbox, it doesn’t actually delete the message - it puts it in your Trash or Deleted folder. To fully delete an email you have to select messages individually and then click delete.


When you search for something using keywords, Google and other search engines keep a record of the terms you searched for. To clear this browser history you need to go the Google toolbar, click on the Google icon and choose “Clear Search History.

Log out of forums

If you are using a survivor’s forum, make sure you log out to cover your tracks.

General tips for staying safe online


       Clear your search history, cache data and cookies when browsing.

       To be extra safe, use computers at a local library, a friend’s house or at work.

       Be aware that the above information may not completely cover your tracks, so be vigilant in clearing all data.

Open modal