10 reasons to hide your IP address

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Your IP address is important information exchanged with each interaction of your devices connected to a network.

Similar to your current residential address, an IP address identifies devices connected to the Internet, including your computers, smartphones, and servers.

From the website you visit or the streaming service you use, everything collects your IP address to make things work. Even though having one is vital, should you reveal your originating IP address? Is there a reason to hide it? Let’s go further and find out.


Here’s why you should hide your IP address


anti tracking ip address

Note that not everyone needs to hide their IP address, but if you think some of the reasons mentioned below warrant a use case for yourself, you can give it a try!

1. Stop websites from tracking you

No matter what website you load, everyone is tracking or collecting your IP address in one way or another.

In many cases, the website does not directly collect your data, but some of the services they use might collect your IP address.

For a modern website with many features, there are a variety of trackers applied to help them analyze their visitors. Of course, this is not necessarily a process of collecting your data and selling it to third parties; this can help them improve the user experience on their site by referring to statistics.

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But if you don’t want to reveal your IP address with a website, you should hide it.

Technically, you’ll need privacy-focused browser extensions, private browsers, and other tools to ultimately minimize tracking. But hiding your IP address is one of the easiest techniques to improve your privacy.

Therefore, you will not leak your country or location information to websites when you hide the IP address.

Related: Here’s How You Can Be Tracked in Private Browsing or Private Browsing Mode

2. Unlock access to content

Many web services apply geo-blocking which restricts IP addresses to a list of countries. For their defense, this saves their resources and bandwidth.

However, if you still want to access the restricted content, you can hide your IP address and use a fake IP address to bypass the block.

Either way, it should come in handy if you’re traveling abroad but still want to access geo-blocked content, like different Netflix series.

3. Stop digital marketers from profiling you

It should be noted that hiding the IP address will not prevent marketers from tracking you. Several methods include email tracking, short links, surveys, and ads that help digital marketers know your likes/dislikes.

However, hiding your IP address makes it difficult to create a complete profile of your preferences.

If you don’t use a fake IP address, they can easily correlate all the data associated with your IP address while improving their demographic statistics.

4. Go Full Incognito Mode

Private browsing or incognito mode in a browser helps you surf the web without worrying about deleting cookies, history and basic tracking.

However, you still give your IP address if you haven’t masked it. In other words, your browsing activity is not really private and your IP address is returning to you for browsing activities in incognito mode.

So, with the masked IP address, you get extra privacy.

5. Bypass government restrictions

If a service or website is banned/restricted in your country, you can easily unblock it by hiding your IP address.

This is similar to bypassing geo-blocking but limited to a single country. You can still use a VPN to hide your real IP address and access the restricted website.


6. Bypass Network FirewallsIP address firewall

If you are browsing the web at work, at the library, or at school, there may be network restrictions based on IP addresses.

But, you may end up bypassing the firewall by using a fake IP address. Note that there can be a variety of complex firewalls and it may not be so easy to bypass every firewall.

7. Stop your ISP from tracking you

If you don’t take any special action, your Internet Service Provider (ISP) will keep track of your web browsing activity. Of course, not all providers will spy on you. But if you don’t trust your ISP, it’s always a good idea to hide your browsing activity from them.

Although you can use DNS-over-HTTPS to improve privacy, many IP masking techniques (like a VPN) should also help.

8. Prevent Search Engine Tracking

Unless you stick with some private search engine alternatives, Google, Bing, and many others typically collect your IP address to associate search data and activity with.

They may also serve personalized advertisements based on your IP address.

So if you want a private search experience and don’t want to see personalized results or ads, hiding your IP address is a good solution.

Related: DuckDuckGo vs. Startpage: Which private search engine should you use?

9. Prevent Location Trackingsite

Whether you prevent apps from using your location information or have disabled it in your operating system, your IP address shows your approximate location.

The location may not be entirely exact, but it is close enough in several cases.

So if you want to keep your location private, using a fake IP address while hiding the original seems to do the job.

10. Hiding your IP address promotes the right to privacy

You don’t have to engage in anything illegal to justify hiding your IP address. Regaining control of your privacy is necessary as we rely more on online services.

We should not disclose all vital information. So hiding an IP address could be a good starting point to limit the data we share. Unless you want a service to provide a personalized experience, you should always prefer to hide your IP address.

Hide your IP address if necessary

There may be times when you don’t need to mask your originating IP address; Suppose you want to access a login web page that is limited to a static IP address or a range of IP addresses.

Unless you have such a use case, you might want to consider masking your IP address.


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