How to check your router history and internet activity

There is no direct way to access somebody’s search history, even if they are connected to your home router. You can, however, set-up your router to log a user’s browser history. But remember: collecting data such as other people’s browsing history is a violation of their privacy and is illegal unless it concerns you or your child.

What is a router?

The home network device, usually called a router, is the network hardware allowing communication between your personal computers and connected devices and the internet.

The router used in home and small networks is more accurately called a residential gateway.

A router is the first line of security from intrusion into a network.

Enabling the highest level of security on the router turns on things like the firewall.

A router is, therefore, the best way to keep your computer system and information safe from attack.


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Router tracking advantages:

Third-party software exists that uses parental control to track you or your child’s browsing activity.

However, surprisingly straightforward parental control workarounds can be found with a simple Google search.

But monitoring user activity through your router is a more discreet method of achieving this, as well as being harder to remove.

A router stores all sites visited by users – even ones that were accessed through a computer’s private mode.

Note, routers contain software called firmware which should be updated as released by the router manufacturer.

How to access router settings:

You need to be able to enter your router settings page and know your IP address to access your router settings.

To find out your IP address, open Run and type CMD. Click OK.

Type IPCONFIG /ALL. Let Command Prompt execute the command.

Now scroll down the results to Default Gateway.

The string of numbers parallel with Default Gateway is your IP address.

Now copy this value and paste it in any web browser.

This will open your router settings if you are connected to your browser.

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How to view user activity:

Most routers have a feature called Logs, listing all the IP addresses connected to your router.

Logs are also where all internet browsing activity is stored.

Before you check the logs, you should know the target device’s IP address.

Navigate to Attached Devices, although this feature may go by a different name on your device.

If in doubt, search for a page displaying all the IP addresses of connected devices.

Once you realise which one belongs to your target, list it, as you will refer to it later.

Now, click Logs to display all the sites that were visited while connected to your router.

You will be presented a list of domains or destination IPs along with the IP address of the user.

You can now use your target’s IP address to track their internet activity.

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