Perhaps you’ve asked the age-old question – Do WiFi routers track internet history? If you did, don’t worry, you’re not alone. This is the type of question that not a lot of people are sure of, which results in them searching for it.
In this guide, we will be covering and discussing this very topic as well as the other questions that revolve and circle it.
You will be able to view your WiFi router history if the said router has the logs feature or functionality. To hide it, you can choose to use the ToR browser or a Virtual Private Network (VPN).
Without much delay let’s dive in and learn how to protect your privacy!
Why Track Your WiFi Router’s Internet History?
We all have our reasons why we want to have a glimpse of the internet history of the devices connected to our WiFi routers.
But there are a couple of the most common reasons why WiFi owners would want to see the internet history done on their WiFi routers.
To Keep Their Children Safe
The vast majority of the people who would need this feature or functionality are parents. And the reason why they want this is because they want to ensure the safety and the security of their children while online.
With the internet beginning to be everyone’s go-to solution for everything, it’s not impossible for your children to encounter dangerous people online.
So, to safely intervene with these types of scenarios, having a hidden eye over their internet history is the most sensible thing to do.
To Keep Tabs of Previous Websites and Activities
Another one of the reasons why many people like to see the history done on their WiFi routers is because they want to keep tabs on the activities and the websites they visited from another device.
For instance, if you accessed a specific website and you’re not sure if you did it on your tablet, your PC, laptop, or your smartphone, you can easily see the logs from the router!
It can save you a lot of time in trying to find where you did the search!
To Organize a List of Websites and Pages You Visited
If you’re more of an organized person, keeping track of all the websites visited through your WiFi router is an essential thing to do.
Because of the fact that you’ll have the ability to see visited websites, you have the chance to neatly organize them in such a fashion that you won’t lose any relevant information or data about them.
These are among the top reasons why you want to trace and track the internet history of your WiFi routers. That being said, how do you access these data?
Do WiFi Routers Track Internet History?
Before you dive deeper into knowing how to see your WiFi router history, it is important to understand that not all routers have this feature.
It’s called logging and it’s a function that will allow the administrator of the router to see all the logs or the data transmitted to and from the router.
Most modern and advanced routers would have them built-in. However, consumer-grade and older versions of routers don’t have this capability, and therefore, added technology is required.
Should your router be able to keep track of logs, here’s the step-by-step procedure on how you can do it:
Step #1: Find Out the Target Device’s IP Address
The first step you want to do is to find out the IP address of the device you want to see the WiFi router history of.
Here are the steps in finding the IP address of different devices:
– Finding IP Address of Smartphones
To find the IP address of smartphone, you need to navigate to you phone “Settings”. From there locate the category that says, “About Device”. Tap on that and you can easily access the IP address of your smartphone!
For iOS devices, though, all you have to do is to go to Settings > WiFi and tap the network name. You’ll find the IP address of your iOS device.
– Finding IP Address of Windows PCs and Laptops
To find out the IP address of your Windows-enabled device, open the Windows Start menu and right-click on the option that says Network. From there hit on Properties followed by View Status. Hit details and look for the IP address in the prompt or the window that’ll open.
– Finding the IP Address of macOS Devices
1. Hit on the Apple Menu. It’s located in the top part (left-side) of your screen.
2. Then, hit on System Preferences.
3. It will open a new window filled with all the Settings that make up your device.
4. Hit on Network. This should open the list of the WiFi networks you’ve connected to, as well as the Bluetooth devices linked to it.
5. Hit on Advanced > TCP/IP. Your IP address will be the IPv4 address that you’ll see.
Step #2: Find the Router’s IP Address
After you find out the IP address of the targeted device, the next thing to do is to open the router’s admin configuration system.
You can easily find out the IP address of your router by going into Command Prompt and by typing in ipconfig/all. The line of numbers parallel to the Default Gateway is the IP address of your router.
Step #3: Access the Router’s Settings
The next step is to access your WiFi router’s settings by typing in the IP address of the router to the address bar of a web browser.
This will open up a log-in page where you have to input the administrator ID and the password. Oftentimes, by default, the admin ID and the password would be admin.
Otherwise, you should see it on the box or the packaging of the router.
Step #4: Navigate to the Admin Page
Once you are in, work your way to the “admin page”.
This is the page where you will see all of the information about the router like its firmware version, the MAC address, the serial number, etc.
Step #5: Locate Logs
Then, locate the section labeled logs. From here, you’ll be able to keep track of the websites visited by the targeted device (through the IP of the device).
We’re not robots so we don’t understand IP addresses. So, for you to know what website was visited, you can easily search for the IP address on search engines.
It’s kind of a complex thing to do, but it is actually possible. But with this in hand, is there a way to keep this information hidden?
How to Hide Browsing History From WiFi Router?
We get it, you don’t want your privacy infiltrated. And while IT experts have a ton of different ways to bypass this, there are two (2) most common ways to avoid giving access to the websites you visit, as well as the activities you do over the internet.
Using Tor Browser
The Tor browser is a browser that’s made specifically for anonymity. If you decide to use the Tor browser, all of the data from your browsing will be kept safe and hidden – even from internet service providers (ISPs).
It is important to note, though, that while the Tor browser boasts of its confidentiality, it’s slower than the typical browsers we use.
Using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) – Best Option
VPNs or Virtual Private Networks are networks that can offer you the privacy that regular networks – even your home routers – don’t.
In using a VPN, your browsing becomes straight and direct – it makes the connection secure, making it unseeable from outside your device and the target IP.
Compared to Tor, using a VPN is much more recommended. Furthermore, they are also a lot faster.
So, do WiFi routers track internet history? Yes, most routers have this capability. However, you can keep the privacy intact by using programs and software to hide all the activities you do while connected to the router in question. If you need a short cut and can invest a little, a VPN can come handy.
Kevin has over five years of experience working in various Tech startups and providing Technical solutions. He has contributed to many Tech publications and websites.