Use Private Browsing Mode in Opera for Desktop

How to go incognito on Opera

As you browse the web, Opera stores data on your device to accelerate load times. However, such data can pose significant privacy and security concerns, especially if you share your device with other people. Opera's private browsing mode ensures that no private data is left behind at the end of a browsing session.

Instructions in this article apply to the Opera web browser for macOS and Windows.

How to Open Private Browsing in Opera for Mac

To open a private browsing window in Opera for Mac, select File in the top-left corner of Opera and choose New Private Window.

Alternatively, use the keyboard shortcut Command+Shift+N for Mac.

Where to find the Private Browsing option in Opera for macOS.

How to Open Private Browsing in Opera for Windows

To open a private browsing window in Opera for Windows, select the O in the top-left corner of Opera and choose New private window.

Alternatively, use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+Shift+N for Windows.

Opera browser for Windows menu with New private tab selected

How Opera Private Browsing Works

Private browsing mode is indicated by the hat and glass beside the name of the current tab. While accessing the web in private browsing mode, the following data components are automatically deleted from your hard drive as soon as the active window is closed:

  • Browsing History: Opera normally stores a list of URLs for each website that you have visited in the past. These addresses are not saved while private browsing mode is active.
  • Cache: Also called temporary internet files, the cache is comprised of images, multimedia files, and sometimes full web pages. These files are stored on your hard drive to be used on subsequent visits to the same websites. This speeds up page load time by not having to make a request to the server in each instance. Private browsing mode ensures that cache files are not saved when Opera is shut down.
  • Cookies: Cookies maintain user-specific settings and other information unique to you such as login credentials. Cookies are also used by many sites for tracking purposes. Sites are not permitted to save persistent cookies to your hard drive while private browsing mode is activated.

Autofill data saved by Opera and downloaded files will not be deleted at the end of a private browsing session.

Opera browser private browsing mode