How to Delete Google Search History on Android, iPhone, and Chrome
It’s okay to want to keep your search history safe from Google. Google has been in the data-security news section quite a lot, and not always in a good way. People are learning to be wary of how data is used by Google, from leaking its products to leaking customer data and even collecting the personal information of people who use Google apps.
Even if you don’t own an Android phone, you probably use three or four of Google’s services each day, so the company knows a lot about you. Your harvested information can include your work commute and shopping habits, even if you used the service offline.
This privacy database doesn’t mean Google is trying to stalk you personally, as the information is stored anonymously, but it is attached to you. The process allows advertisers to understand demographics better and determine your interests to target ads.
If you’ve been looking at something you shouldn’t, doing things for work, or don’t want sites to extract your private information, there are ways to delete the Google history stored on your devices.
Use a Web Browser to Delete Google Search History in MyActivity
Note that deleting search history removes it from your Google account and not just for specific devices. Therefore, deleting any history deletes it from all devices.
Follow the steps below to delete Google history using your iPhone, Android phone, tablet, MacBook, Chromebook, desktop PC, or laptop.
- Go to your My Activity page using a browser.
- DO NOT CLICK THE DELETE DROPDOWN at this point. This action has time filters (only before adding other filters like time or product), but it deletes all Google History (not just Google Search) immediately. If you previously added filters, you’ll receive a prompt first.
- Click on the vertical ellipsis (three vertical dots) to the right of Search Your Activity.
- Choose the history timeframe you’d like to delete. For this article, we’re selecting All Time.
- Check the box next to Google Search and uncheck the other boxes listed on this next screen. Then, click Next. Note: If you want to delete everything, leave the other boxes checked.
- Finally, review the web pages and click Delete.
Using the above steps allows you to quickly delete your Google search history using specific dates and keywords if desired. Upon completing the above-listed steps, all Google search history gets deleted from the devices associated with that account.
Clear ALL Google Search History Entirely using Google Chrome
If you want a quick and easy way to bulk-delete all Google search history, plus optionally remove all browsing history, saved passwords, cache, and cookies on Chrome, the steps below cover it all.
- Launch Chrome and log in to the correct account if not already done.
- Click the vertical ellipsis (three vertical dots) in the top right-hand corner of your browser to open the Chrome menu.
- Now, select Settings from the options.
- Next, click on Clear browsing data, located in the Privacy and security section.
- A new tab will open from which you can choose from Basic or Advanced tools. Basic is a way to quickly clear Google history, while Advanced gives you more control over the individual elements, such as passwords.
- Click on Clear data to remove the selected items.
The above steps delete all Google history (including search history) you selected during the removal process.
Clear Google History on an Android
On your Android device, open Google Chrome and follow these steps:
- Tap on the vertical ellipsis (three vertical dots) in the upper right-hand corner.
- Now, tap History.
- Next, select Clear browsing data… in the new window.
- Confirm when finished.
Note: You can also tap the X next to each web page to delete your searches individually.
All of your Google history, including search history, disappears after performing the above steps. Therefore, ensure you have saved any sites, data, and other personal information elsewhere.
Clear Google History on an iPhone
For iPhone users, open Google history and follow these steps to clear your history:
- Tap the horizontal ellipsis (three horizontal dots) menu icon in the lower right-hand corner.
- Next, tap on History.
- Then, tap Clear Browsing Data… on Cookies and iMessage Search History.
All of your Chrome browsing history on your iPhone is now deleted, including Google search history.
Set Up Auto-Delete for Google History Data
Google does offer an option to dump your data automatically. If you prefer to keep some data, it’s best to avoid this function. However, if you feel like automatically deleting your Google search data, follow these steps to set up the auto-delete feature:
- Visit your Google My Activity page, but ensure you log into the correct account.
- In the left navigational menu, click on Activity controls.
- Scroll down and click on Auto-delete (Off).
- Choose to auto-delete activity older than 3 months, 18 months, or 36 months, then click Next.
- Confirm your auto-delete activity option by clicking on Confirm. Remember that the preview is just that.
Now, Google will routinely autodelete your search history based on your set duration.
Google History Deletion FAQs
I want to save my passwords but delete everything else. How can I do this?
If you’re deleting all of your Google data, it is possible to de-select the option under “Clear Browsing Data” for clearing passwords. But, if you want more security, you can use a browser extension such as Last Pass to store all of your passwords in a secure location.
Like Google or Chrome, Last Pass can auto-fill your passwords by storing these passwords for you.
Can I permanently close my Google account?
Yes. If you’re no longer interested in using your current Google account, you can permanently delete it. We do have an article here that explains the entire process.
If you visit the Google Account webpage, you can click on the option to download all of your data and delete your entire Google account and everything that goes with it.
Remember that performing this action will completely wipe out all your Google-related information. This process includes losing all Google Docs, emails, contacts, etc. If you’re using an Android device, you’ll need to create or use another Google account to access many features and backup your device.