Security and Privacy in Opera

Security and privacy on a shared computer

Are you sharing your computer with colleagues, family, or someone you live with? Do you surf with Opera on publically accessible computers? This page holds some tips for maintaining your security and privacy within the same computer and user account.

Shared computer

First of all, when installing Opera on a multi-user Windows computer, make sure to opt for separate user directories during install. This will ensure that your settings, e-mail, passwords, history, and so forth, are stored in your own user directory only. Remember that this may be of little use if other users have administrator privileges on the same machine, unless you protect your files by other means.

Shared account

When using Opera on a shared user account, for example in a library, the following features may raise privacy concerns, and you should consider whether you want to disable them, avoid them, or use them with caution:

E-mail, Usenet news, newsfeeds, and chat
To disable, select Mail and chat accounts and Feeds > Manage feeds from the menu.
Password Manager
To manage stored passwords, select Settings > Preferences > Forms.
Master password
To disable or set a master password, select Settings > Preferences > Advanced > Security from the menu.
Auto-completion of forms
Keep Settings > Preferences > Forms empty, or only use it for generic, non-sensitive information
Saved sessions and "Continue from last time"
Select Settings > Preferences > General to ensure that Opera will not start with the tabs you had open, your saved sessions, or your home page for the next user.
User JavaScript
To clear any User JavaScript you may use, Settings > Preferences > Advanced > Content > JavaScript options and clear any files from the User JavaScript folder. Note that User JavaScript is not loaded on secure pages.
You may also want to also clear the list of transferred files if you have downloaded any files that did not open directly in the browser. To clear the list of downloaded files, select "Downloads" from the menu, right-click the files you want to remove, and select "Remove" or press Delete.

Private browsing

All browsers keep records of where you have been on the Internet, and store data about the Web pages you visit in a local folder known as the cache and in your browsing history. If you are using a shared computer and do not want other users to know about sites that you have visited, you can use private browsing.

From the menu, select either "New Private Tab" or "New Private Window" depending on how you prefer to browse. When you close a private tab or window, all records of the Web sites you visited are removed; no record is kept in the browsing history, cache or Closed Tabs, and no cookies or logins are stored.

Caution: While private tabs and windows do not leave any record of the Web sites you visit, if you deliberately save data, for example, if you save a bookmark, or download a file, this will be still visible after the tab or window is closed.

To quickly close all the private tabs and windows you have open at once, select the tab bar and select "Close All Private Tabs" or use the Ctrl+Shift+Q keyboard shortcut.

Delete private data

If you do not use private browsing, you can use Settings > Delete private data to completely clear the history, cache, and so on. Select "Detailed options" if you want to specify the items you want to clear. Note: Be aware that this clears the items competely for all users.