How To Spy On Internet Activity Through Wi-Fi

Is it possible to spy on the internet activities of devices connected to your router through Wi-Fi? With the emerging technology, you don’t need to be technology savvy to monitor the internet activities of devices connected to your Wi-Fi router. If you are running a company or a home, it is prudent to grasp the internet traffic through your server and router. The process aids in taming children from restricted sites and ensures that employees are productive.

Why Spy On Internet Traffic Through Wi-Fi?

Responsible parents find it necessary to monitor their children’s sites through their gadgets. Some sites might contain explicit content that might be detrimental to the child’s mental health, thus watching what the young ones do online becomes necessary.

In the same breath, if you are an employer and prohibit your workers from visiting non-work sites, it is perfect to spy on their internet activities to figure out whether they waste time doing chores unrelated to their tasks. You might be surprised to discover that some employees apply for new opportunities while at the office.

How Do You Monitor The Internet Activities Through Wi-Fi?

Monitor The Internet Activities Through WiFi

Your wireless router store all sites visited by various users. Even those sites visited via incognito mode are usually available for the administrator’s view. Viewing the activity log is a straightforward process. For instance, if you are using a Netgear router, the following steps will guide you to monitor what is going on in your network:

1. Start with launching the internet browser on your computer. Follow it by typing your IP address in the address bar. Your IP address is usually an 8-number digit that is easily accessed by referring to your router’s manual. Suppose you don’t find the number in the manual, Open cmd.exe, and key in ipconfig/all, and search for the default gateway file.

2. Enter your router’s username and password when asked to do so. If you don’t remember the login credentials, try the following default keywords: admin/admin, admin/1234, admin/password, or root/root. It is also possible to Google your router’s model to find its default password.

3. After accessing your router, go to the filtering section and click on the logs icon. Ensure you take note of the IP address’s source while filtering the traffic.

4. If you wish to access all devices connected to the router, go to the maintenance section and select attached devices. Here you will find all devices linked to your router.

5. Besides monitoring internet activities via the router, other options can handle the task successfully. The other tools used to monitor network packets include:

1. Open DNS

Open DNS uses simple logic. Whenever you connect to the internet, all your activities go to the router, which directs it to your DNS provider. The work of the DNS provider is to interpret the domain name and assign it to its IP address.

Your Internet Service Provider (ISP) provides you with a default DNS server. If you wish to monitor what goes on in your network, you must replace this default DNS server with an open DNS server.

The open DNS server has a control panel that allows you to see the traffic through your network. Open DNS servers not only give you the idea of the sites browsed on your network, but you have an option of restricting unwanted sites such as gambling and adult content sites.

How To Acquire Open DNS

Getting started with open DNS is a simple task. All it takes is requesting your router to use the open DNS server IP address (208.67.220.220 and 208.67.222.222). After this process, create your free account at the open DNS website. 

Go ahead and link your open DNS account when you are logged in, and there you are! The open DNS dashboard will allow you to spy on all that goes on in your network.

The Pros Of Using Open DNS To Monitor Your Internet Traffic

1. It works excellently.

2. The process is easy to set up even with people who don’t have the technical know-how.

3. It allows for the blocking of unwanted services and websites.

Cons

1. No real-time traffic as data is available after 24 hours.

2. It can’t pinpoint a specific device that accessed a particular website; hence you are left with the hassle of figuring this one out.

Note: Open DNS works on all platforms.

2. Wireshark

Wireshark is a powerful tool that captures network packets and shows the traffic activities in your network in real-time.

If you are interested in a particular device in your network, it is possible to monitor its traffic. The moment you launch the software, it displays all IP addresses of devices linked to your network. Choose the device you want to watch and start packet capturing. It takes a few seconds for you to begin monitoring the outgoing and incoming traffic from the targeted device.

Theoretically, using Wireshark software to spy on your Wi-Fi traffic sounds pretty straightforward; however, it is not a walk in the park in real life. The process is complex as the data relayed contains an IP address and a lot of information that doesn’t make sense. To discern the relayed data, you must know how to extract meaning from the provided jumbled information.

Ensure that you turn ON the Promiscuous mode and the filters are set for HTTP requests whenever you capture packets of data from other devices. 

The Pros Of Capturing Data Packets Using Wireshark Software

1. The software does not only monitor the traffic from connected devices, but it can alert you when outsiders try hacking into your network.

2. The Wireshark tool helps you dig out loads of information, making it a go-to tool for system administrators.

3. The tool relays information in real-time.

4. The tool aids you in pinpointing a particular device to monitor at any given time.

Cons

Since most device manufacturers block packet capturing, you will be forced to spend extra money to acquire a separate Wi-Fi adapter to allow the use of Wireshark in promiscuous mode.

Note: Wireshark tool is compatible with windows, macOS, and Linux.

You can download the software for free here

3. zANTI 

zAnti is a Wireshark alternative app for android devices. The zANTI tool makes it easier to monitor your internet traffic via android devices. The tool is user-friendly and pocket forgiving as you don’t have to purchase any extra gear. This is mainly because android network cards allow for the capturing of packets.

How zANTI Tool Works

Here is a glimpse of how the zANTI tool works:

1. First, you have to download and install the app on your android device.

2. Run the app on your device.

3. The app scans your network and shows you all linked devices.

4. Select the one you wish to monitor and start mining data.

5. The tool captures HTTP traffic of the targeted device in real-time

Note:  If you desire to monitor the HTTPS traffic, you must turn on the SSL strip to thwart the website opening in a secured protocol.

The Pros Of Monitoring Your Network Traffic Via zANTI Tool

1. The tool is easier to use and set up.

2. It effectively captures data packets and many other features.

3. It intercepts usernames and passwords from less secure sites.

4. It doesn’t require extra gear to run on android devices.

Cons

1. Its reliability is not 100%.

The zANTI tool is compatible with android devices only, and you can download it here for free. All you need is an email address.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can What I Search Incognito Be Seen By A Wi-Fi Owner?

First, you have to understand that your browser’s incognito search mode has no control over internet traffic. Hence, whatever you search incognito can be tracked easily by Wi-Fi owners whenever you visit a site using their servers.

Can I Delete incognito History On My Android Phone?

Yes, it is easy to clear your anonymous browsing history from your phone. Here is how:

1. Open the Chrome app on your tablet or android phone.

2. Tap the more history icon at the top right corner of your phone or tablet.

3. Select the Clear browsing data option.

4. Select the amount of data you desire to delete under the ‘time range’ icon. Select the ‘ all-time ‘ option if you wish to clear the entire history.

5. Check the browsing history.

6. Select clear data, and your anonymous browsing history is washed down the drain.

What Browsing History Does A Wi-Fi Owner See?

All things that you search on the internet and the sites you visit can be seen by a Wi-Fi owner. This is made possible by the router that tracks your online activities. The router also logs your search history for the owner to see your online traffic.

Is It Possible For A Wi-Fi Owner To Access Deleted History?

Disappointingly, a Wi-Fi administrator can access your deleted browsing history. The visited websites and amount of time spent there is no secret to the administrator even when you delete the browsing history.

The Takeaway

Spying on internet activities through Wi-Fi might be seen as an infringement of privacy. However, incidents such as laxity at work and children visiting undesirable sites necessitate the practice. If you must monitor internet activities in your network, this page is full of tools that can assist you in performing the task optimally.

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