All browsers have a private browsing mode that allows users to browse the internet without creating a record of their online activity on the device they’re using. It also prevents websites from tracking you, automatically expires all logged in sessions on websites, and doesn’t save cookies, among other things. It’s useful in certain scenarios. By default, you cannot turn off private browsing for a browser but you can use other hacks to get around this limitation. Here’s how you can disable incognito mode in Chrome.
Disable Incognito Mode
This trick works on Chrome 68 and Windows 10 1803. At the time of writing, both these versions are the latest, stable version of Chrome and Windows.
In order to disable incognito mode in Chrome, you need to edit the Windows registry which means you must have access to the administrator account, or its credentials.
Open the Windows registry with administrative rights, and navigate to the following location;
Here, right-click the Policies key, and create a new Key. Name it Google. Next, right-click the Google key, and create another key under it. Name this key Chrome.
Inside the Chrome key, right-click and create a new DWORD (32-bit) value. Name it IncognitoModeAvailability, and set its value to 1.
If you have Chrome running, close and reopen it. The New Incognito Window option will be gone from the Chrome menu.
This will disable incognito mode in Chrome for all users. In Chrome, you can create multiple profiles and each profile runs as a separate, self-contained instance of Chrome. Everything from history, account, to apps and extensions is separate however since this edit is made at the registry level, it will impact the app over-all.
In order to get the incognito option back you can set the value of IncognitoModeAvailability to 0, or you can delete the key you created.
This change to Chrome can be reverted by anyone who has access to the administrator account and knows where to look for the key. It might also be reset if a user uninstalls and reinstalls, or resets Chrome. The chances are slim since the key is user created but it works because Chrome supports it which means there’s a chance it might be removed by a reset or reinstall.
If you want to password protect this little setting, you should guard your administrator password. Without administrative rights, a user may be able to see that you’ve created the IncognitoModeAvailability value but they will not be able to delete it.