Ways to Hide Your IP Address
By Nancy William 5 minutes
Different components help to make the internet access both smooth and successful. Entities like the internet protocol (IP) address help us get to the internet and access whatever servers we want.
However, it is also the same tool through which we can be easily identified, tracked, traced, and sometimes attacked.
Anyone looking to find you or know more about you can do so using your IP address. IP addresses also make it easier for some servers to restrict your access to their content.
The best thing to do is to hide this all-important credential when browsing the internet. Today, we will learn why this is essential and the most common ways to achieve this.
What Is an IP Address?
An IP address is a unique set of numbers assigned to each device on the internet. No two devices can use the same IP address at the same time.
A typical IP address comprises four groups of numbers, with each group separated by a period. The numbers often appear random but are mathematically generated and allocated by the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA).
IPs help users connect to the internet, and because they are unique, they make it easier to identify users and their requests; hence the servers can send the correct result to the right device.
Without IP addresses, not only would it be impossible to interact with a server, but returning information would be messy as servers will have a difficult time telling which device to send a particular result.
IP addresses used by consumers can either be private or public, meaning they may either be used within or outside of a network.
Public IP addresses can also be divided into two groups – static and dynamic.
Why Is It Important to Conceal an IP Address?
Below are some significant reasons why you need to conceal your IP address before embarking on an online operation:
To Protect Your Identity
One of the easiest and quickest ways for people to identify you on the internet is to scan your IP address and then combine the extracted information with other information about your browsing behavior, such as your operating system and browser type.
The obtained information can be pieced together to create an online fingerprint about you. This makes it easier to identify you amongst other internet users.
Therefore, it is essential that you hide your IP at all times if you want to protect your identity online.
To Maintain Anonymity
You will need to be anonymous on the internet if you don’t want hackers to track and trace your activities online.
Also, your competitors can keep an eye on you and see everything you are doing on the internet.
This is why being anonymous is considered a clever way of browsing the internet, and concealing your IP helps you to achieve this.
To Bypass Geo-Restriction
Some servers implement geo-blocking to stop some users from accessing their content. The technique works by screening the user’s IP and confirming their physical location.
Next, the access is restricted if you are browsing from a forbidden location. It would be impossible for the affected user to access desired servers because of their IP.
Therefore, it is important to hide your IP address and, consequently, your exact location to bypass these restrictions.
The Main Ways to Hide an IP
There are three primary ways to hide your IP address as described below:
Using a VPN
The tool known today as a virtual private network (VPN) is one of the most popular solutions in hiding IP addresses. It takes your request and passes it through a tunnel without showing your original IP and location.
Since your request is channeled via an encrypted tunnel, no one sees your real IP or knows your identity.
Using Proxy Servers
Proxy servers are sophisticated tools that can stand in between internet users and the internet. They accept requests from the user and transfer them to the target servers using its IP and location.
Proxies come with a vast pool of IPs and locations, meaning there are multiple options for the user to choose from.
By concealing the user IP and using a different IP and location each time, proxies make it harder for users to be seen or tracked while out on the internet.
Proxies also make it easy to bypass geo-restrictions. For instance, a user can use a Germany Proxy server to reroute his request and bypass any restriction he would otherwise face in German cyberspace. Check here if you are interested in Germany Proxy or any other location-based proxy server solution.
Using Custom Browsers
Another easy way to hide your IP address is to use a custom browser such as The Onion Router (TOR) browser, which is essentially a collection of several computers in different locations worldwide.
When a user routes their request through a TOR browser, the request is passed through a different computer in a different location, and this helps to conceal the user’s original IP and bypass geo-restrictions at the same time.
The internet works through the collective blend of technologies and protocols. One such protocol, IP address, helps us to get into the internet and browse it smoothly.
However, the IP address also leaves us exposed to different challenges on the internet and needs to be hidden for a more satisfactory internet experience.