I'm a bit paranoid, but I want to know if my school can see what I'm browsing while logged into my school account but on my home network with my own laptop. I have brought my laptop to school previously and have used their Wi-Fi, if that makes a difference.

I log in to my school account on chrome but on guest, so every time I exit it erases my history and logs out of my account.

I'm wondering if they can see what I'm browsing on my home account while still logged onto their account from guest chrome?

I'm not very tech-y so I don't really know how anything works, but any answers would be appreciated!


5 Answers 5


If you are using the schools WiFi to be online, then yes, everything you do can be monitored. Being a school, monitoring might not be too sophisticated, but potentially, it could.

If you are online via your internet provider at home, when you use your browser to log into a website, that website can monitor everything you do on it, but not more. Not another browser tab, not another browser altogether. Again, more sophisticated attacks exist, but they are certainly not used by your school.

A whole different thing is software installed on your laptop. This could be a VPN, proxy or any kind of monitoring software. Once locally installed, there is virtually nothing it cannot do. But software cannot be installed without you knowledge or consent (again... more sophisticated attacks exist, but are certainly not used to spy on school kids). However, whether you gave consent and installed something or let your laptop be handled by school personal unsupervised so you aren't sure that nothing was installed locally, only you can know.

To summarize:

  • If you are just using a web interface, like opening their webpage and interacting with it, you are safe. At least from your school. Real criminals are a different matter.

  • If you installed an actual program on your computer, then yes, they could be spying on you. Technically. Whether they actually do is a guess at best.

  • To be more specific here: "then yes, everything you do can be monitored." should be: "then yes, everything you do ON THE NETWORK can be monitored". Also while they cannot legally install monitoring software without your consent, schools have taken a rather enlarged view of the doctrine of In loco parentis (often without even knowing that doctrine exists) and have done some legally questionable things.
    – Petro
    Commented Aug 24, 2020 at 16:13

if you are using VPN provided by your school, yes they can. also if you have installed any software developed by your school, it can be a spyware and you may be monitored. but it's not possible on other ways. Most importantly your school will not spying on you, because it's illegal. also they need not to monitor an adolescent , it is not NSA ! so don't be paranoid.

  • 2
    Just because it's illegal doesn't mean that some schools don't do it anyways, thinking that they are an "authority" over kids and can do what they want.
    – user163495
    Commented Aug 19, 2019 at 9:40
  • yes, but think of value and reason. again it's just an ordinary school , not NSA !! it's not logical to spend money and resources to catch students watching hentai. considering cost and value, is very first concept of hacking called "hack value".
    – H. Far
    Commented Aug 19, 2019 at 13:14
  • I am aware, but there was a case where a school provided students with laptops, which contained spyware. If memory serves correctly, the spyware could check what websites students went to, record via webcam and microphone, etc.. Yes, the potential backlash is huge, but the cost of installing spyware is not that big, especially if you already pay for the laptops.
    – user163495
    Commented Aug 19, 2019 at 13:31

School IT department could see through your school Google account's Google drive.
However, they cannot see your web history unless you're logged into your account (source)


If you installed some school developed software from their wifi then probably. It may also be possible that some spyware was installed in your machine when you took it to your school and connected it to the wifi. Technically, its possible but highly unlikely. It's just your school.

As of you logging your school account from your home with guest chrome user. The school account may do some basic tracking but a full blown monitoring won't happen.


The school can keep track on what you do on their website. When you log in, it could be logged, any site you visit on the school server can be associated with your account of course, since you logged in.
It is also possible for them to track any and all activity while you are in their network.
Wireless can be decrypted right from the air if someone has the shared key and your handshake, even if that person is not the owner of the network, wired can be tapped with hubs or special ports on certain switches.
The owner of a network can theoritically do any number of manipulations, such as reading, blocking or modifying packages, and thus this can only happen if you are actually on your school network or are using VPN. This is prevented by using encryption such as SSL, which prevents modification.
It is technically possible to track other tabs using exploits in browsers or by installing malware, but this is highly unlikely (and highly illegal) to be done by your school.

In short: Don't worry about your school spying on you. Especially not if you're not using their network from home.
They can still track what you do on their servers though, or if you visit their server by clicking a link, your browser might send a referrer url, which could be used to show the previous page.

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