Hide Your IP Address 9 Different Ways…or Just the Best Way.
You need to know why and how to do it, and which way’s best.
Even if you’re not sure know what it means to “hide your IP address”, we’ll explain what that means and make it relevant to your day to day life. You might say it could help you take control of your own internet experience…and that’s not an exaggeration.
If it hasn’t occurred to you yet, one day when you’re on the internet a few questions might pop into mind, such as these:
- How did this website pinpoint precisely where I am?
- Why do some ads seem to know what I’ve been thinking looking for?
- How do some online services block me from content?
The answer to all three question is likely the same.
They figured it out based on your IP address.
Why hide my online location?
There are plenty of reasons for you to learn how you can keep your actual location anonymous on the internet. This method is especially helpful if you’re looking to access websites that are generally not available in your region.
Or when you’re looking to purchase airline tickets from the internet.
You might not be aware of it yet, but many times, the greater WWW’s knowledge of your location can bring you more harm than good. For instance, when you visit a website to purchase an airline ticket, you’d often notice that the price of the ticket starts to rise each time you close and reopen the tab or refresh it. This is done to push you into purchasing the tickets before the prices rise any further.
In this case, the website knows that it’s you who wants to purchase the tickets even after you’ve closed the tab in the first place. The website found out by pinpointing your online location.
Use a reliable VPN to hide your IP Address
But how do websites find out my online location?
The answer to this question is simple, and it’s just two words: IP address. That’s right. It’s your IP address that tells websites where you live on planet earth.
When you visit any particular website, that website can see your IP address. The thing about IP addresses is that they are given to you by your Internet Service Provider. Every region has its own unique IP Address. It’s never difficult for websites to discover your exact location once they are able to see your IP address.
How to hide your IP Address
Now that you know how IP addresses can ruin all the fun, it’s time that you learn how you can hide your IP address from the world. A leaked IP address can be a nuisance for any privacy-conscious user, but the good news is that there are plenty of ways you can use to hide it. Some of the most common ways for hiding an IP address are mentioned below.
1. Use a VPN
Using a VPN is definitely the best option you can use to hide your IP address. Once connected, you are assigned a virtual IP address that takes the place of your original IP address. This special technique ensures the anonymity of your actual physical location on the internet.
When you connect to a VPN, you are given the option to connect to any of the available VPN servers. You are often shown a list of locations on your VPN client app. Choosing any of these locations connects you to a server that is in that region. Once that happens, your online traffic starts passing from that server before reaching the internet. This method essentially masks your original IP address and puts it under the cover of the VPN server’s very own IP address.
This technique is very helpful, especially if you want to take advantage of different hacks on the internet. For instance, if you want to access a particular website or a streaming service that is not available in your region, you can connect to an excellent and reputable VPN service and change your IP address to a location where that website or channel is available. Once you’re done, you can easily get access to the website or streaming service of your choice.
The same applies if you want to buy cheaper flight tickets from the internet. While it is true that flight ticket websites increase the prices after identifying your IP address, it is also true that the price of tickets is often different in every region. If the ticket price is $60 in Los Angeles, it might be available for $40 in Chicago. Again, changing your IP address helps you save dozens of dollars in hard-earned cash.
But even if you’re not interested in all of that, the privacy and security aspect alone is enough to make the VPN service a necessity. Provided that you choose the right VPN service, you can enjoy a healthy combo of online privacy, security, and anonymity while you’re browsing on the internet.
Another method to change your IP address is by connecting to a proxy service. These services are cheap and are often free as well. While they can change your IP location, they come with problems of their own. These services are often very slow and can ruin your browsing experience. They’re also full of leaks. A simple Web-RTC leak is enough to reveal your actual physical location to the website.
That’s why choosing a proxy service might not be the best option for your needs.
3. Public Wi-Fi
An easy option you can use is to go online using a public Wi-Fi network. While it may save you from revealing your home IP address, it does require you to leave the comforts of your room and sit at a café or a bar somewhere else. Even then, the websites might be able to locate the city where you are connecting from, and you won’t be able to access websites that are not available in your region.
Moreover, there’s also the chance that you can get hacked! Public Wi-Fi networks are unsecured networks and are considered dangerous habitats where hackers and cybercriminals could be lurking around in search of easy prey.
Before the VPNs and proxies came around, those who worried about their privacy used to use Tor. Tor (which stand for The Onion Router) is a browser that is different from any other browser you’ve ever used. This service is skilled at routing your traffic over hundreds of different nodes to hide your original IP address.
Tor is an amazing tool if you want to keep your IP address secret. However, the service is not good for streaming or torrenting because the nodes are often located in the wrong regions. Also, Tor is on the watch of the FBI and other surveillance agencies, which might mean that if your browsing activities are borderline illegal, you might not be 100% anonymous on Tor.
5. Get a Dedicated IP Address
A lot of people choose to use a dedicated IP address rather than the shared IP given to them by their ISP (Internet Service Provider). This gives you the option to alternate between your home IP address and your dedicated IP address. You can also choose to get a dedicated IP address from the location of your choice, giving you access to many different options on the internet.
6. Use Mobile Network
Like your home internet connection, your mobile network also offers you an IP address, albeit a different one. Just like in the case of the public Wi-Fi network, you can choose to use your mobile network if you temporarily wish to use a different IP address.
7. Unplug your modem
Your IP address is assigned to you by your Internet Service Provider. Most ISPs offer dynamic IP addresses, which means that if you unplug your modem and re-plug it, chances are that you’ll be assigned a different IP address. You may have to wait a bit of time for the DHCP lease (your IP address assignment, that is) to expire, though, but it is a good way to get a new IP address if need be.
8. Use NAT Firewall
A NAT firewall (for Network Address Translation) operates on a router to protect private networks. A NAT firewall allows only internet traffic to pass through if someone on the network requested it.
This is an effective method to change your private IP address. However, private IP addresses are different from public IP addresses. This means that only the private IP of your device shall change, and it would have no impact on what the websites see when they track your physical location.
9. Ask your ISP to change it for you
As a final resort, you can contact your ISP and ask them to change your IP address. Again, this wouldn’t have any impact on your web location, and it would reveal all the information that your previous IP address was also revealing. This method would definitely not work like a charm, the way a VPN would.
How to check if your actual IP address is hidden.
Regardless of whichever method you choose from above, make sure to use the WhatIsMyIPAddress.com tool to check if it’s working or not—it’s the leading IP-lookup resource on the internet. After all, there’s no point in using these methods if your actual IP address is still exposed on the internet.
There’s a reason VPN topped the list.
Even though we covered nine ways to hide your IP address, using a VPN is probably the best way to go for most people who want security, privacy, and an internet with fewer restrictions.
Check out PureVPN.
One VPN service you should check out is PureVPN. PureVPN delivers the advantages of security, privacy, and online access people want and need. It offers advanced online privacy and security tools and provides access to your favorite streaming websites. Wherever you are, you can connect to any of their 6,000 servers in over 100 countries. PureVPN also delivers top-level security features, including end-to-end encryption, Split Tunneling, and Internet Kill Switch. Better yet, you can even get a dedicated IP address with PureVPN. You can get all the information you want on the PureVPN website.
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