How to hide your IP address: Understand the pros and cons

While each has their own reasons for protecting the privacy of their online activities by hiding their IP address, here are some of the most common ones:

In this guide, we will cover one of the most common online privacy issues: how to hide your IP address. Let’s look at some reasons why hiding your IP (Internet Protocol) address is a good idea and we’ll look for ways to actually hide it.

Why should you hide your IP address?

While each has their own reasons for protecting the privacy of their online activities by hiding their IP address, here are some of the most common ones:

  1. To hide your online activities from your ISP.
  2. To download torrent safely.
  3. To keep your confidential information private.
  4. To bypass a block.

If any of these reasons are not obvious to you, here is some basic information about each one:

1. To hide your online activities from your ISP

Your Internet service provider (ISP) knows everything about you: name, address, phone number, payment details and perhaps family members, and more.

Your ISP can also see everything you do online – unless you are encrypting and anonymizing your online activity (explained below).

To hide your online activities from your ISP

In addition, your ISP assigns an IP address to each device that connects to the Internet in your account. The assignment of IP addresses is registered. This allows all of your Internet activities to match your identity, using the IP address assigned by your ISP.

When browsing the web, the IP address assigned by your ISP is revealed to the world. Each website you visit, ad, and crawler get its unique IP address and location.

2. Sharing Torrent and P2P files securely

One area where hiding your IP address is vital is file sharing by torrent and P2P (peer-to-peer).

Millions of people around the world use torrent software to share files every day. Torrent is not illegal, but using it to share the wrong types of content online can be.

To protect yourself, it only makes sense to hide your IP address using one of the methods of your choice, as we will explain below.

3. To keep your confidential information private

You may need Internet access to obtain sensitive medical or personal information. In situations like this, hiding your IP address can protect your right to access this information privately.

Imagine your insurer finding out you are visiting cancer treatment sites, or your spouse finding out that it was an of Ashley Madison website users that were hacked a few years ago?

Another high-risk area for your sensitive information is public Wi-Fi access points. They have a reputation for being places for online predators of all kinds who seek to steal personal data.

Hiding your IP address when connected to these hotspots (especially if done using a VPN) provides some protection against the theft of your data in a way that can be traced back to you.

4. To bypass a block

Geo-blocking systems use your IP address to determine whether or not you can view blocked content or visit blocked websites.

As countries and websites continue to restrict access to content, more people are looking for the right tools to unblock websites.

Hiding your IP address (more specifically, temporarily using an IP address that is not geographically blocked) can give you access to that content or website without having to physically travel to the blocked region.

The top 3 ways to hide your IP address

There are tools to help you camouflage your IP address. They are perfectly legal in all countries, except in the most repressive ones. Here are the 3 best ways to hide your IP:

  • A VPN (Virtual Private Network);
  • A proxy server;
  • The Tor network;

There are also many techniques for changing your IP address, but they do not solve any of the problems that interest us.

If an IP address is linked to your name at any time, those records will not miraculously disappear just because you change your IP address. Nor the records of what you did with the IP address in the past.

Only by hiding your IP address so that it is not associated with a specific activity, you will be protected.

Common disadvantages when hiding your IP

Hiding your IP is clearly beneficial, but using methods to hide your IP can affect your use of the Internet in many ways, with the most common disadvantages listed below:

  • Slows down your Internet connection.
  • Some VPN services are specifically blocked.
  • The encryption used may not be strong enough.
  • Some tools register and may resell the user’s Internet habits to third parties.

Conclusion on how to hide your IP address

Hiding your IP address correctly is one of the best things you can do to increase your online privacy.

There are a few ways to do this, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. In this guide, we present the reasons for hiding your IP address and the three best ways to do so.

After analyzing the pros and cons, we think that the best way to hide your IP address reliably and securely is to use a quality VPN service.

They can hide their IP address not only from the final destination but from your ISP and anyone who monitors your Internet connection. If you want the best security, a VPN is the best option.

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