You may be wondering, does a router store information? If yes, what kind of information.
The router is the central hardware that distributes the internet at home or in business. It connects your computer to the internet and shares data between the computer and servers.
The big question is does the router store any kind of data and how does this data affect you?
Yes, the router stores some data in its operations.
However, the kind of data it stores does not directly affect your personal security. Typically, the router stores information about settings and operating systems.
It also holds security configurations, routing tables, DHCP, and DNS information. The amount of information held varies depending on the type of router and where it operates.
Even so, there are critical factors about router information storage you should know. Read further to find out the details.
Why Does a Router Store Information?
The first question we should answer is why a router stores information.
As we have seen, the router mainly holds configuration and settings such as traps, DBS, ARP, and other networking-related data.
This technical data has got nothing to do with your personal information. In some rare situations, your IP address and computer data may be collected.
However, this information will not be stored. As a matter of fact, the router does not have the capacity to hold huge amounts of data.
So, why exactly does the router collect information:
- The router uses information stored to streamline your internet browsing experience
- The information collected is used to boost internet connection security
- The router stores information needed to identify your unique computer on the internet
- The information is used to detect any potential threats
Ideally, without the snippets of data your router collects, you might run into some issues. This is why it is necessary for your router to collect pieces of information.
This information is not a threat to you at any end but rather a form of protection.
What Kind of History Does Routers Store?
The first fact we have to establish is that the router does not have huge memory. If it needs to store information, it will need sufficient capacity to hold this information.
While it has some information processing capacity, it does not go to the extent of storing huge chunks of data.
This helps us come to an understanding of what kind of information the router keeps. Ideally, a router should keep the following information.
Logs of IP Addresses
The most important information stored by your router is logs of IP addresses. The router records all IP addresses connected to your router.
Since the router does not have much storage capacity, it only records the most significant part of the IP address.
The other important information that the router stores is the router admins’ login information.
After capturing the IP, the router may also capture admin or user logins. This information is only stored temporarily.
The main details that your router will record about other routers and IP addresses include:
- Login details
- Web filter lists
- Firewall rules
- Browsing history
Who Can See Information Stored by Router
The information stored by the router is available to any person who has access to the Wifi admin panel.
In some instances, the wifi administrator may retain the rights to access this information.
In other instances, you may be allowed to access the wifi administrator panel using your router logins.
You will be able to see the information stored by your router if you have enabled web history logging for all users or specific IPs.
Note: Your router does not store any kind of information about the websites you have visited.
However, you may be able to track down websites visited on your router by turning on parental controls.
About Parental Controls
You can turn on parental controls from your Wifi Administration Panel. This will allow you to have access to all websites your router accesses.
While this feature is okay, it takes up too much space and may affect your router functions. Besides storage, it is also a big risk to your internet security.
You should not have parental controls turned on for too long.
Where Does the Router Store Information Collected?
So, where exactly does the router store its information? We have already stated that the router only has minimal storage capacity.
Now, we must look at the kind of storage a router uses and how much information it can store.
There are three key factors to note in your router storage:
- The router has three types of storage just like a computer
- The storage for the router is at a small scale than a computer or even a phone
- The RAM only processes data packets from one server to the computer
Essentially, the router operates just like your computer. In other words, it has different types of storage.
The three storages of a computer are also found in your router but at a smaller scale.
In other words, a router is a tiny computer with a processor, ram, and hard disk. The work of the RAM in your router is to receive and send data packets.
This does so effectively that your computer always remains connected to the internet.
The storage disks of your router are constantly erased. Due to their small capacity, they do not hold data for too long.
How Long Does a Router Store Information?
This is a difficult question to answer. The router does not operate on the basis of time in terms of storage.
In some cases, the information may be held for quite a long time. In other cases, information can be deleted on the same day.
The router usually deletes information based on a few key factors:
- The information is retained and deleted based on its importance in facilitating router services.
- Information that is essential to the running of router services can be retained for a long time.
- Information is retained based on the space available. If the router has sufficient room, information can be stored for days.
- Data is held and released based on the frequency of use. A router that accesses multiple sites may need to be cleaned regularly
Note: The router is designed to carry out in-house cleaning whenever possible.
Just like the human body, your router will flash out excess data when it does not have room.
Can Routers Store Information on the Cloud?
Yes, there are instances when the router can be set up to store data and information on the cloud or connected devices.
If you want the router to store specific information that may require storage, set it up such that it can store data on the cloud.
This is the only way you can recover web history. You will not be able to recover such information from your router history. But with cloud or device storage, it is possible.
Does a Router Keep Personal Information?
If you are wondering do routers store internet history, the answer is no. Routers do not store internet history or personal information.
If you visit a site that you do not want anyone to know, such normation will not be found on a router.
The router does not store any information on your computer or from your PC. This kind of information would require a very big hard drive. This is something routers do not offer.
Note: You may however be able to access browsing history on router storage if you have set up parental protection.
This kind of information is only available temporarily.
This blog now answers the question why does a router store information. The router only stores information that is necessary for running its functions.
The information stored is necessary for your safety while browsing.
Apart from operational data, the router does not have the capacity to store large chunks of personal data.
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.