An IP address is a vital piece of online information, but what is it? This article is going to teach you the answer to that question, along with how proxies use your IP address information to create a more private online experience.
What is my IP address used for?
First of all, you need to understand the role your IP address plays in your Internet activity:
Online identification: In the same way that someone needs your mailing address to send you a letter, a server needs your IP address in order to send your computer information online. Your IP address identifies you so that a server on the Internet can send its information to your computer. This makes it so that you can enjoy the Internet, but it also makes it easy for people to track your activities.
Information shared: The information that an IP address shares includes your geographic location, often right down to the block, as well as information about your device.
IP address and privacy: There is the possibility to get some form of privacy by changing your IP address. Proxy servers can provide this by masking your real IP address. They hide your IP address by providing you with an alternate IP address of their own that can’t be easily traced back to you.
Proxy servers are typically used for security purposes, but are also useful for unblocking geo-restricted content. The proxy server acts like a third party, allowing users to visit a website and receive information from them without the website receiving the personal information of their IP address.
Why should I change my IP address?
Changing your IP address actually involves masking it. Your IP address is still in your IP address, but a proxy server is asking it with one of their own. It’s rather simple to do, here’s why you should do it:
Bypassing geo-restrictions: When you appear anonymous while browsing the Internet you can access websites and networks that prohibit users from specific geographic regions. This happens in many industries, including online shopping. YouTube also blocks based on geo-restrictions often.
Prevent website tracking: There are websites that track your Internet activity. Changing your IP address has them tracking the other IP instead of yours.
Bypass IP address bans: There are certain websites that may prohibit your IP address from accessing it due to a variety of reasons. By changing your IP address, you can bypass this issue.
Protect your online searches: Search engines collect a vast amount of data from your online searches. Proxy servers will allow you to keep your searches private.
One of the most effective ways to mask your IP address is by using a proxy server. A proxy server will provide you with the ability to use an alternate IP address instead of your original one.
Changing an IP address with proxy servers
As we said, proxies provide anonymity by masking your real IP address to look like another IP address. Here is all you need to know about using proxy servers for optimal Internet privacy:
How it works: The proxy server will make your ID address anonymous by rerouting your Internet activity through their proxy address on their server so that every website you visit only sees the proxy IP address.
Different ways to change your IP address: Depending on how you’re connected to the Internet, the changing of an IP address varies. If you’re connected directly to the Internet through a gateway, you will be required to change the IP address of the computer.
Given that the most common ways of changing your IP address involve changing the router’s IP address, we will focus on those methods.
Changing a router’s IP address
Routers are three-layer networking devices which are used to connect multiple devices to the Internet. To change the router’s IP address, you need to log in to the router as an administrator. Here are the necessary steps you need to take in order to change the router’s IP address:
Switch off the router for about a minute and later switch it back on.
Try switching it on and off several times, and your ISP (Internet Service Provider) may assign you a new IP address. If that doesn’t work you should try turning the router off overnight, and then restarting it once you wake up in the morning.
Reconnect the router to the ISP through an administrative interface.
In a dynamic IP address network, the router is assigned an IP address that is public, and all the devices that are connected are assigned with an IP address that is private. The level of online privacy associate with this is very low. At best, you can hope to thwart some tracking efforts.
When should I change my IP address?
By hiding your IP address, you can have more privacy online. Remember, when you use a proxy server to change your IP address, it means that you won’t access the desired website directly. Instead, the proxy acts as an intermediary that relays information between you and the desired website. Here are some situations when using a proxy server can really be of indispensable value:
Protecting private searches: Search engines may track and store data from your searches. You can prevent this by using a proxy server.
Using WiFi hotspots: Given that WiFi hotspots are usually open to the public, they are deemed unreliable when it comes to maintaining user security. Using proxies will help hide your IP address from unprotected networks.
Local network restrictions: The administrator of your network, such as your school or workplace, can restrict you from seeing certain websites. A proxy server can open this up for you. ProxyHub has helped users with this in the past.
National restrictions: Governments, ISPs, and other large organizations can restrict entire networks from accessing certain websites. Proxy server can get around some of these restrictions, but the most advanced firewalls can still prevent it.
There may be a number of individual reasons why you might need to upgrade your online privacy. In most stuff these situations, using a reliable proxy provider is crucial. I would suggest steering clear from free proxies because they often promise unrealistic services for free. A far more reliable option would be to choose paid proxies with a good reputation.