How to easily monitor internet activity on your router

If you could choose any superpower, would you choose to read minds at any given time?


Well, we can’t offer you this (just yet, anyways) but we can teach you how to monitor internet traffic and activity on your router, which is almost the same thing, right?


Can you monitor Internet activity through a router?


In simple terms, yes!


But if you’re looking for what exactly each person who ever logged into your router was looking up at any given time, and what websites they clicked on, then not exactly. Unless you have a new router that has these capabilities installed, but older routers shouldn’t have this capability easily accessible.


Just a reminder that there are ethical dilemmas with trying to snoop on someone’s web browser history…


Anyways, the type of internet activity you can relatively easily access through a router is IP addresses of the devices that connected to your router, and traffic. If you’re interested in seeing every attempted connection to your router attempt made from outside your network, then you can do that by looking at your firewall logs.


If you want to really do a deep dive into which website a device accessed at any time and this kind of browsing history information, then you’re not going to get that simply with a run-of-the-mill router, but you’ll need a parental control family security software.


You can, however, easily block websites just from your router by accessing your router’s settings.


How to access your router’s settings


In order to access your router’s history, it’s no secret that first you have to access your router’s settings. Fear not, this isn’t as complicated as it sounds.


Go to your router’s setting page. Please note that you’re going to need to know your IP address for this step.


If you don’t know your IP address already (or by heart) you can actually Google “what is my IP address” and Google will tell you!


The next step is to enter the login credentials for your router. If you don’t know what those are as your router was likely installed by someone else, you can check the documentation that came with your router, which should include both the username and password.


If you accidentally threw out those credentials (we don’t judge) then try what is arguably the most common default router credentials:


Username: Admin or admin
Password: try either Password or 1234


If neither of these brilliant options happen to work for you, then—sorry to be that person—Google it, you’re likely to find the default credentials for your specific router model.


If the above still doesn’t work for you or someone had changed the credentials to something else you don’t know or remember, feel free to reset your router, meaning you’ll need to reconfigure the SSID and password.


We’d like to take this as an opportunity to change your router username and password to something more secure and complex, and not something someone could easily guess or heck, even Google.


By now you should have figured out how to log into your router in some way or another, congratulations!


How can I block websites using just my router?


After you’ve successfully logged into your router’s settings page, there should be a button labeled “Content Filtering.” After choosing this option, you should have another option that says “Block Sites.”


Here you should be able to enter domains, or keywords inside a domain name, that you wish to be blocked. There should be another option here giving you the option to block these domains at all times, or to schedule from what time access to them will be restricted.


If you want to block certain wireless router users from visiting specific websites but also let other users or devices access them, you can add trusted IP addresses that will not be restricted.


Can you see what websites are visited on your WiFi router?


The short answer is yes, but it also depends what type of router you have, and how old it is.


Using your wifi router’s settings online, you can see what IP addresses logged into your network connection and when, and many routers can also give details as to which websites were accessed by each IP address that was connected to it.


Some newer routers can give a lot more details about what websites were visited, when they were visited, which pages within the same domain were visited, and more! But once again, this type of information depends on what router we’re talking about here.


Keep in mind this means that when you connect to a wifi network, the person monitoring that router’s internet usage could potentially see what you are looking up. So on routers and network connections that are public or not even very secure, you may not want to log into sensitive websites—whatever that may mean for you…

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