My son's school lent him a laptop to access a particular website- which I believe we can't do anyway because somehow it requires an organizational live account. Can the school see what you are doing on their laptop when connected to your home WiFi? Assuming we don't care if the school surveils the use of this laptop. One risk is a keylogger or other potentially dodgy software that someone installed. Is there particular risks to the whole home Wifi network? It is in Japanese and my wife won't let my look too closely to understand what is installed.

I suspect the school is more technologically backward and never monitored what is done with the laptops. My worry is other people who used the laptop. My network is Win10 Fujitsu Computer, my father-in-law's laptop 2 years old, 2 Kindle Fire HD 8, the mother-in-law's Galaxy smartphone and our Wifi connected TV.

They don't use email for teacher communications at government schools in Japan. The website is the central government- it is only slightly more interesting than homework which consists just about only add and subtract numbers.

  • WRT 'can the school see what you are doing...?' - yes. The school built the system on the laptop, so they could easily have installed a program on the system that monitors what the user is doing, and sends reports back to them. WRT 'Is there a risk to the whole network?' - Possibly. If there is a worm on the laptop, it could try to infect other machines on the network. But, this same risk is present whenever you connect your laptop to any pubic wifi network. See security.stackexchange.com/questions/14927/… for more info.
    – mti2935
    Jul 19, 2022 at 11:45
  • Home WiFi Router. Jul 19, 2022 at 12:46

1 Answer 1


The risk to your home wifi network really depends on how you've got stuff set up. Its unlikely that the school cares about the rest of your network, but since they control the laptop they could theoretically snoop around the rest of the network and have access to whatever is not protected.

To mitigate this you could make a separate untrusted vlan for it, with only internet access, or just use a 4g/5g stick for its own internet access and dont even connect it to your wifi. Turn on client isolation on your AP if available to stop some access as well.

Another theoretical is that they may be able to monitor on the wifi nic, and sniff traffic - potentially giving them access to the contents of unencrypted communications (hugely unlikely, bad movie plot stuff, but within the realms of possibility!)

If the other devices on your home wifi are reasonably modern I wouldn't worry too much, it would be some work to look at them and I would guess the school has better things to do :)

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