Ever Thought About Hiding Your IP Address?
The internet can be a fantastic tool, but with an option as powerful as it has become comes some great risk. Identity theft, spyware, spam, and an utter lack of privacy all come when you’re browsing from almost anywhere in the world, but you do have an option. You can hide your IP address. With a few simple steps, you can safely browse almost any site from anywhere in the world, even if you’re using a more public WiFi connection.
Not even sure what an IP address is? IP stands for Internet Protocol, and put simply, it’s a way for one computer (or tablet or phone) to communicate with another one on the internet. It literally connects you to all of the other digital devices online right now. Your IP address is four numbers, and they contain one to three digits each. So it could be something like 126.96.36.1997 or 188.8.131.52. No matter what yours actually is, though, it’s those four numbers that allows you to send and receive data online.
IP addresses are either static or dynamic, which means they either change or don’t change. Static IP address remain the same all of the time, and they always tell where you’re located. Dynamic addresses, though, are borrowed from a pool of options every time you log on.
What Your IP Reveals
If someone can gain access to your IP address, they can learn all kinds of things about you. For example, they can take a closer look at which provider you’re using to connect to the internet. They might be able to locate the city you’re in. If they’re really good at getting information online, they can track you down to your name and address, though that’s both rare and illegal.
Does It Really Matter?
The simple reality is that hiding your IP address matters quite a bit. When you hide your IP address, you’re guaranteeing that all of the data you send and receive is completely encrypted. Even if someone wanted to take a look, steal your information, or infect your computer, they couldn’t. It’s the perfect way to make certain no one is snooping around your connection if you’re out and about, but you still want the ability to shop, bank online, or connect to a network where security is a concern.
If you’re a downloader, you’ve probably already heard at least a bit about hiding your IP address. Even if you’re downloading legally, you can easily end up on some company’s bad side because you have a torrenting app installed. Hiding your IP address gives you the security you need when you’re downloading anything.
The Bottom Line
The internet should be a completely free and open space, and you have the right to make sure all of your communications are secure and encrypted within that space. An unsecured connection means that someone is reading what you say and what you do at all times. Hiding your IP address puts an end to that immediately.
I’m Convinced. What’s Next?
Ready to hide your IP address? You probably should be. Fortunately, it’s easier than you think. There are several security tools that offer you this service. Take a look at these three.
- IPinator VPN: This service is fairly new to the security world, but the reviews are amazing. They offer a minimalist layout, and their claim is that they hold more than 2000 IPs that are continually located and cleaned, so you always get a reliable connection, no matter where you are.
- Hide My Ass VPN: Easily one of the biggest services on the market today, this UK-based option offers three different packages as well as access to 860 servers across 190 countries, so you have a huge number of available IP addresses when you sign up with them.
- Private Internet Access: This service has been at the top of best lists by sites like PCMag for years. It makes it simple for users to surf both online and privately. It offers both basic functionality as well as advanced options.
Stop everyone from looking over your shoulder when you hit the web next. Choose a service that will keep you as secure as possible.
Featured photo credit: IP address graffiti via flickr.com