Internet Surfing: What Does It Mean?

Here’s the meaning of Internet surfing:

Surfing the Internet means browsing the Internet. It’s like riding the waves of data and information.

A wave goes, another comes, and we’re back on the board. Surfing the Internet, however, requires different equipment.  

So if you to know the meaning of Internet surfing, then you’re in the right place.

Let’s jump right in!

Internet Surfing: What Does It Mean? (Everything to Know)

What About Internet Surfing?

When we talk about surfing, it’s easy to imagine that we’re on a beach somewhere, getting the surfboard ready to swim out to ride those waves. We hardly think about the fact that we’re surfing daily.

Yes, we’re talking about internet surfing. We do it all the time, and it’s a fun activity. We seek information from different sources, so we go “surfing” the Web.

It’s like riding the waves of data and information. When one wave goes, another comes, and we’re back on the board. However, we use different equipment when surfing the Internet.

And, it is certainly not as difficult as actual surfing. So, what does “internet surfing” really mean, and how did it become our daily routine?

What Is World Wide Web Surfing?

It all started with the Internet, but the World Wide Web makes surfing possible. The Web is the sea of information that we access and search to find information through the Internet.

It’s an information system that uses URLs (Uniform Resource Locators) to identify documents and resources. An URL is a thing that we type into the address bar of our browser to access a website.

Browser address bar.

Now, two things are necessary for the Web to work. First, we need a web browser. This is the software that we use to access the information contained on web servers.

Web browsers are apps like Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Microsoft Edge, Opera, Safari, etc. The main function of this software is to retrieve content from the web servers.

This includes the following steps:

  • We type in the URL, which begins with HTTP or HTTPs (HyperText Transfer Protocol secure).
  • When we hit the Enter key, the web browser begins rendering a web page.
  • Once this is done, the web page is displayed in the formats that the browser supports, like videos, images, text, etc.
  • Finally, the web page can have hyperlinks, including URLs that provide access to other web pages.

So, we double-click on the browser app, such as Google Chrome. Then, we type the URL into the address bar, that is, and we hit Enter. The web browser retrieves the data from the webserver.

We can now see the Google logo, and we can see the search bar. We’ve accessed a web page that is also a search engine. Then we type in some keywords like “how to make a perfect steak, ” which takes us to a page with numerous hyperlinks.

We click on one of the hyperlinks, and it takes us to the perfect recipe for a steak. The web page is rendered, and we can see an image of a steak and text about the ingredients and the preparation procedure.

What Is the Meaning of Internet Surfing?

It’s all about navigation. As we go through the steps to reach a good recipe for a nice meal, we have to navigate something.

The meaning of internet surfing is the navigation from page to page on the World Wide Web using hyperlinks. So basically, it’s the thing that we call internet browsing.

There are an endless amount of live websites at the moment, and the number of web pages continues to grow every day. Browsing allows us to find what we are looking for easily. But, other things make internet surfing easier.

For example, blogs. These often have recommendations and hyperlinks that lead to other pages of interest. We have filters on every search engine to specify our search.

If it’s just images we’re looking for, we just need to click on the filter for images in the search engine. The same applies to videos, news, music, etc.

Let’s face it—surfing the Internet can consume a lot of valuable time. It’s much easier to find one page that contains the most useful information linked with other web pages. Nevertheless, nothing can beat surfing because it lets us discover different things and find new interests.

Another way to actually decrease the need for surfing the Web is to subscribe to different content on the Web. Email newsletters, YouTube channels, and notifications from the news websites can have it all at a click of a button.

With that, there’s no need to go to the search engine and type in things such as “latest news today” or “funniest videos 2021.” Also, we don’t have to waste time on information that doesn’t concern us.

What Is Internet Surfing Tracking?

Privacy is an important part of our lives. We don’t always want to know what’s going on in other people’s houses, and we don’t want them to know what’s going on in ours.

Unfortunately, surfing the Web comes with the ISP (Internet Service Provider) knowing your history. By history, I mean web browsing history. So, everything you do online is known by your ISP.

However, there are a few ways to surf the Web with more privacy. You can always use a VPN (Virtual Private Network) and Incognito Mode on your browsers.

Computer keyboard with incognito button.

The thing is that these two work together to keep you more anonymous online. A VPN connects us to a random server or a specific server that you choose. Incognito Mode doesn’t store cache files that make reopening web pages easier or ad tracking cookies.

It’s actually recommended to use a VPN when surfing the Web-connected to a public Wi-Fi network. 

The Incognito feature that’s part of almost any browser out there blocks data saving from websites. It prevents the browser from saving your search history, cookies, and other data you’ve typed related to a webpage. It still allows tracking, but this is where VPN comes in.


  • Theresa McDonough

    Tech entrepreneur and founder of Tech Medic, who has become a prominent advocate for the Right to Repair movement. She has testified before the US Federal Trade Commission and been featured on CBS Sunday Morning, helping influence change within the tech industry.