How to Delete History from WiFi Router?
Most people don’t know this, but your wi-fi router actually keeps logs of the websites you visit. And not just you, any device connected on the wi-fi network, including those in incognito mode.
This poses serious privacy risks for you and calls for you to take action. One way to protect yourself and your data would be using a VPN, or more easily, deleting the router history.
Below is a step-by-step guide to help you access and delete the router history from your desktop browser.
6 Steps for deleting history from WiFi Router
Step 1: Find the router’s IP address
For you to access your router settings on your browser, you’ll need to know its IP address. An IP address is usually an 8—digit number, in the form of ‘000.000.0.0’.
You can find this number in the manual of your router or using the Command prompt (cmd) on a Windows computer.
If you can’t find your manual, type ‘cmd’ on the search bar, or use the ‘CTRL + R’ shortcut and type cmd. A command prompt window will pop up.
In the window, type this command: ipconfig/all, then press Enter.
In the results section, look for the value of ‘Default Gateway’. Those eight numbers define your IP address. The most common router IP addresses are 192.168.1.1, 192.168.01, and 192.168.2.1.
Step 2: Open your router settings
Once you know your IP address, open the address bar on your browser and type in its value. It will lead you to the router settings login page.
Every router comes with its default username and password written on their user manual. If you don’t have the manual, you can always check online on the manufacturer’s page for the default login details for that router.
If you’ve forgotten the password to your router, try resetting it back to its default settings.
Most routers use the default username Admin, and the password can be 1234 or even password. If this doesn’t work either check the back of your router and see if default user name and password is printed to it.
Enter your admin username and password, and you’ll have access to the settings dashboard.
Step 3: Visit the system logs
Your router history logs are usually stored in the system logs or the Administrative Events Log section of your router dashboard.
This section is usually located on the navigation bar either at the top, or the left side of the page depending on your router’s brand.
Once the system log page opens, you’ll have access to a string of IP addresses (for each connected device), and the domain addresses for the websites visited.
Step 4: Clear the logs
Your final step is clearing the logs you see in the system logs. You should see a clear log button at the bottom of the page. Clicking it will prompt you to confirm whether you want to delete the logs. Click yes, and all the data will be erased.
In cases where you might need the log details in future, a good practice would be copy-pasting the logs to a hard drive before deleting it.
If you don’t want to clear all your logs, you can opt to delete logs on specific devices connected to the router.
To do this, look around the navigation bar for ‘Attached devices’ feature. This name could be slightly different for different router brands.
This page will show you all the devices connected to the wi-fi, and hence allows you to see the logs for specific devices. Each device appears in the form of its IP addresses.
Double click on a device to see its logs, then click on the clear logs button to delete its history.
Keep in mind: For routers such as Linksys, you have to ensure that the logging feature is enabled for you to access the browsing history.
Step 6: Delete your browser history
Even after you delete your Wi-Fi router history, you should remember to delete your browser history. Go to your browser settings and ensure that all history is deleted.
Otherwise, deleting the router history will be pointless.
If these steps don’t work, contact your local IT expert for help.
Alternative Way Clear Router History: Clear Router Cache
An alternative to clearing your router’s browsing data is to clear its cache. The cache refers to a part of the router that’s responsible for storing instructions about settings. To clear your cache, you’ll have to reset the entire router.
For some router brands, doing this also leads to the deleting of the router history. Here’s how to do it:
- Take a small object like a paperclip and use it to hold down the reset button. It’s usually at the back for most routers.
- Hold the paperclip (or alternative object) until the lights on the router fade out. The cache is now cleared.