Hiding your IP address is quite simple if you know which tools to use. But Let’s first get the basics.
What is an IP address?
It’s a unique address that identifies a device on the Internet or a local network. It allows a system to be recognized by other systems connected via the Internet protocol.
IP addresses are nothing more than system identifiers. IP is tasked with defining, structuring and delivering information packets from point A to point B.
Every participant of the internet has to have an IP address to connect to it. This means that your IP address can be used to identify your location.
Since your computer and other devices need an IP address to access information online, there’s no way to avoid IP addresses altogether.
The only way to hide your IP address is to change it to a new one.
Therefore, if you are someone who wants to hide their IP in order to get access to geo-blocked sites and stay anonymous, keep reading;
Here are 5 ways you can hide your IP address from websites, network intruders and your ISP.
1. Use a VPN Software
A VPN is a private network that uses a public network (usually the Internet) to connect remote sites or users together.
VPNs are the strongest, safest, and easiest way to hide your IP address and allow you to create a secure connection to another network over the Internet.
They offer powerful security features that keep you safe and anonymous.
VPNs can ensure security and allow you to access region-restricted websites, shield your browsing activity from prying eyes on public Wi-Fi by encrypting data.
VPNs assign a new IP address to systems connected to them. As you connect to a virtual network, you’ll be assigned a second IP address, which spoofs your real one.
Setting up your VPN client takes minutes, and once you’re all set up, connecting to it and thereby changing your IP happens at the click of your button.
2. Use a Proxy
Proxy servers are another way to hide your real IP address from the websites you visit. One of the most common uses of proxies is to access geo-blocked content.
Proxy servers are man-in-the-middle servers that connect your information packets to their desired destination while changing their appearance as they go through the Proxy.
In other words, Proxy servers don’t encrypt your activity but act as a bridge in the flow of your internet traffic.
In addition, a Proxy server intercepts your traffic and takes control of your connection to make it look like you have a different IP address.
In simpler terms, everything you do, the proxy server repeats; it mirrors your behavior. The destination servers (websites you’d like to access) think of the proxy is your traffic.
Proxy servers are very efficient at low profile necessities such as bypassing geo-blocked content or IP restrictions.
However, proxies come with a few downsides. A big one is connection speed. You might find yourself dealing with frustratingly slow browsing speed when using a proxy.
You also have to be careful about security when choosing a proxy. Unlike VPNs, proxies don’t encrypt your traffic and may leave you vulnerable to security risks.
3. Use TOR
Tor is a free way to keep your online activity completely anonymous.
TOR, named after the original project “The Onion Router” is a free client that randomly route internet traffic between each other in order to obfuscate the origin of the data.
This enables you to be assigned a new IP address, on the same basis as a VPN client.
When you go online using Tor, your traffic is directed through a series of different servers before you get to your end destination.
By the time your traffic reaches a website’s server, the website has no way to trace you back to your original IP address.
Tor has the added benefit of enabling you to access websites, otherwise inaccessible with normal browsers.
One of the best parts about Tor is it’s free! If you are looking for a no-cost way to hide your IP address, then Tor browser is probably your best option.
If you don’t want to switch browsers, you can also download a Tor Firefox extension.
4. Use mobile network
A quick way to change your IP address, if you fear yours has been compromised, is to use your cell phone’s data.
As it’s a different system, it will have a different IP address.
This, of course, is no substitute for a laptop/PC workstation. It may aid you in rare emergency situations, when your IP is obviously being attacked, but outside of that.
4. Connect to public Wi-Fi
Your IP address is assigned to you by your internet service provider. This means that when you connect to the internet through a different network, you will be assigned a new IP address.
Using your laptop to connect to a coffee shop’s open Wi-Fi network is an easy way to change your IP address.
Same as with Mobile Data, this is neither an effective IP change method, nor a sustainable way of surfing anonymously & securely.
Obviously, this method won’t help you get past any geo-blocks, and it’s more of a quick-fix than a long-term solution.
Unfortunately, there are many risks when using such open hotspots networks.
Connecting to public wi-fi can also leave you vulnerable to hackers, malware, and other security threats.