What Is LinkedIn Private Mode and How to Turn It On?

Stay hidden as you browse LinkedIn for your recruitment!

LinkedIn is one of the best social networks out there. Unlike other platforms, it’s specifically geared towards the professional world. It serves as both a social media platform and a job board. Which is one of the biggest reasons behind its success. With over 800 million users, it’s the top recruitment and networking platform. 

One of the unique features of LinkedIn is its transparency. It allows users to see who has visited their profiles. It’s a one-of-a-kind feature never seen before on any other social media platform. While some take full advantage of it, others would want to keep themselves anonymous as they sift through their network to find candidates. LinkedIn has introduced Private Mode for people with such preferences. This guide will help you understand Private Mode and how to turn it on. Let’s dive in!

What Is LinkedIn Private Mode?

Private Mode is a privacy setting in LinkedIn that enables you to hide your identity on the platform. By default, when you visit someone’s profile, LinkedIn stores your information. The person whose profile you viewed can access this information and see who’s looking at them. With Private Mode on, they won’t be able to access this information. In their Who Viewed Your Profile list, your name won’t be displayed anymore. Instead, it’ll read as LinkedIn Member and a message that says, “This person is viewing profiles in private mode.” 

Why Do I Need This? 

So the big question is, why do I need this feature, if at all? Well, the answer’s going to be different for everyone. A recruiter can use the feature to look for candidates on the down low. You don’t always want to alert candidates that you’re viewing their profile. Lest they get spooked. They can easily browse profiles of candidates in Private Mode and then turn it off to reach out to them. Some people just want to keep their identity hidden as they browse through profiles. Others might need this feature to view the profile of someone they’re envious of but don’t want to alert them. Some might just be too shy to openly announce they’re looking at a profile. For whatever reason you need Private Mode, it’s safe to say this is a very handy feature to have on LinkedIn. 

Do I Need Premium for This?

Private Mode does seem like a feature you would have to pay for. But the good news is that it’s actually free. You don’t need to have a Premium account to turn Private Mode on. So you close your wallet right back if you think otherwise. You should also know that Premium LinkedIn users still won’t be able to know who viewed their profile if you have Private Mode turned on. Kudos to LinkedIn for protecting our privacy rights!

How to View Profiles in Private Mode?


So how do I get this Private Mode thing going? Hmm, good question! We’ll let you in on it. It’s an easy enough process, and with a few simple steps, you can get it too. 

Here’s how:

  1. Click on the Me option in the top-right corner of the screen.
  2. From the drop-down menu, select Settings & Privacy.
  3. Open the Visibility tab from the left-hand panel.
  4. Find Visibility of your profile & network.
  5. Right next to Profile viewing options, click Change.
  6. Select Private Mode from the options provided.

Now wasn’t that as easy as ABC?

How to Do It on Mobile?

The icing on the cake is that LinkedIn also lets you turn on Private Mode from your mobile app. Many other platforms restrict which settings you can change from the app and keep it to a minimum. These platforms redirect you to the website if you want to make changes since it’s safer and authenticates your identity. But it’s also very annoying and time-consuming. Luckily, LinkedIn doesn’t do that with Private Mode. 

So here’s how to turn on Private Mode from your mobile:

  1. Click on your profile picture in the top left corner.
  2. Open Settings from the panel.
  3. Select Visibility from the menu.
  4. Press on Profile viewing options.
  5. Select Private Mode from the on-screen options. 

Your settings will be saved automatically. These steps are very similar to how you do it on the website, so it’s easy to remember as well. 

Turning It Off?

Turning Private Mode off is as simple as turning it on. All you have to do is follow the same steps right down to the last one. When you see the option to turn Private Mode on, opt for the first one. This will be your Name and Headline. What this option does is make your profile viewing public, so people will know when you see their profile. It’s a good option to use when you’re building a list of candidates you want to reach out to. 

Semi-private Mode?

Did you try turning on Private Mode? You probably saw three options there. We intentionally skipped the second option, so we can talk about it separately. That mysterious second option is what LinkedIn likes to call a Semi-private Mode. The option will read as Private profile characteristics. What this means is that whenever you view someone’s profile, they won’t see your name but will only be able to see the characteristics of your profile. These can be anything like a Broker from Real Estate industry. This option is for those who don’t want to be completely anonymous and want to let others know they’re interested in them without disclosing their identity. 

Going Private?

Some people prefer to have transparency when browsing online, but many don’t. They want to remain hidden as they look for candidates to hire. LinkedIn Private Mode is the perfect feature for these people. Hide your presence on LinkedIn as you browse through profiles anonymously. 

Did you try out Private Mode on LinkedIn? How was it? Let us know in the comments below!

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