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Checking my Windows 10/11 PC’s Login History

Checking my Windows 10/11 PC's Login History
Read time: 4 min.

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Do you share your PC with anyone but keep sensitive information inside your PC? Or perhaps you have a naughty sibling or a roommate whom you suspect may or may not have accessed your PC without knowledge.

One of the ways to see if that could be to install a CCTV to monitor your computer for any unwanted users. But surely, there would be an easier way to do this right?

Fear not, for if you are using a Windows PC, today you will learn how to easily track your PC’s login history to see if anyone has been accessing your PC without your approval.

How does knowing my PC’s login history help me detect unauthorised usage of my PC?

Before we go to how you can check your PC’s login history, it would be good for you to know how this will help you check for unauthorised usage of your PC.

If you are familiar with Windows PCs, you would know that every time a user turns on the PC, they will be prompted to log in to an account registered on that PC.

This way, your PC will automatically log the activity that a user has logged in at the exact time of said login.

With this, all you’ll have to do is to just check these logs and see if there was any login to your PC at times when you’re sure that you, the owner of the PC, didn’t log in to your PC.

Windows Event Viewer

To access your PC’s logs of its login history, we will use the Event Viewer app. 

This app will contain a multitude of logs that your PC saves but for today, we will only be looking at the login history logs.

Fret not, it is a built-in app that comes default with your PC for Windows 10 and Windows 11, so you won’t need to download anything.

How do I open Windows Event Viewer?

To open Event Viewer, a very easy way would be simply to go to your search bar which would be located at either the bottom left or bottom center of your screen. 

In the search bar, simply type “event viewer” and the first result returned to you should be the correct match. Simply click the icon of the app and the app will open.

Upon opening the app, you will be greeted by the default interface of the Event Viewer app, which will look like the screenshot above.

Take a look at the panel on the left of your screen. Expand “Windows Logs” and select “Security”.You will then see the security logs as seen in the screenshot above.

Your Security logs may or may not look the same as above, having either less or more content. This is because the security logs contain more than just the logs of people logging in to the PC.

To simplify the display, we can filter the logs to only show the logs of logins.

On the right side of your screen, click “Filter Current Log…” and the “Filter Current Log” window will pop up.

Windows allocates Event IDs to each event logged by Event Viewer. In the search bar above “Task category”, enter the ID “4624” and click “OK”. This is the Event ID of the logs we are looking for, with the Task Category of “Logon”.

You will see that now, the only event logs that are shown will all have the Event ID of 4624, hence now all of the logs are of users logging in to your PC.

With this, simply scroll through the event logs while paying attention to the “Date and Time” column. As you scroll, keep an eye out for any date and time where you feel that you did not log in to your PC by yourself.

In this example, I did not remember logging in to my PC at 12:37pm on 27th March 2024, hence I clicked on this specific log to see if it was me or another user.

After looking at the “General” tab, I found out that it was my roommate, John Doe, who logged in to my PC at that time!

Now you know how to check your possible unauthorised usage of your PC

With this, we hope that now you will be able to check your PC’s login history to find solid proof of anyone who used your PC without your approval. 

Remember, at the end of the day, if you have sensitive information, do try to store them in more secure places in your PC, where other users cannot access your files.

Another way would be to password-protect your folders and files so that only you, who knows the password can access it. 

If you would like to know more about these methods, stay tuned for more tips and tricks to secure your PC better! 🙂

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