IP (Internet Protocol) is a critical part of digitalization. Although it offers many advantages, it is not without downsides.
There is every chance that there has not been yet an invention so essential yet so dangerous. We get to access the web information only through the IP address, but we can also suffer the worst attacks through our IPs.
And that is not all, and we can also suffer certain types of blockings and restrictions due to our IP addresses.
So, if you run a business and want to avoid some of the problems that many people encounter on the internet every day, you might need to hide your IP address.
Today, we will be showing how to hide IP addresses and more.
What is an IP address?
An IP address is a unique set of digits assigned by the Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to every device that can access the internet. The numbers which range from 0 to 255 are, essentially, the piece of the puzzle that allows communication between a computer and a target server.
The number is further grouped into four sets of digit separated by periods (.) with the sets representing your domain, subnetwork, network, and the host computer.
The origin and geolocation of every IP address are easily accessible as it usually reveals information such as your IP hostname, your ISP, your country, region/state, longitude and latitude, and even your area code.
And the above data can make it very easy for anyone to reach you, which is why people and businesses always hide their IPs whenever they are using the internet.
Why is it important to hide an IP address?
In most cases, an exposed IP is a risky IP. For instance, an IP address usually reveals the type of information we have described above, and, with a little digging, a hacker can discover your full name as well as your home or office address (depending on where you are using the device with that IP address). And this is why we hide the IP address.
Below are some of the common reasons why it is vital to hide an IP address:
- To Avoid Blocking and Geo-Location Restrictions
An online business needs a lot of information and for a lot of reasons ranging from brand monitoring and protection to review and price monitoring, and this information can only be gotten through web scraping — the process of extracting information from multiple sources.
But web scraping must be done repeatedly and frequently, which can start to look suspicious, prompting the host server to place a ban on your IP.
Also, certain servers do not outrightly grant access to IPs from certain geolocations, and a common phenomenon is referred to as geo-location restrictions.
Hiding IP addresses is the only way brands can overcome both challenges, scrape different servers for necessary data and access the internet from any part of the globe.
2. To Prevent Targeted Attacks
There is, probably, nothing worse than being attacked on the internet, especially when you are unprepared for it. An exposed IP, like we earlier described, means hackers can discover several private information about you or your company.
This information may then be used to launch an attack on you, your business, your devices, or your servers.
The surest way to avoid this is to mask your IP when performing certain tasks on the web or to visit certain websites.
3. To Hide Your Location
There is no telling the type of harm one can suffer once one physical location has been uncovered. While an IP address does not necessarily reveal your physical address, the other information it exposes can be used to figure out where you live or work.
To avert this danger, it is usually advisable to conceal the IP address during many web operations.
Popular ways to hide an IP address
As an e-commerce business, it is not during every internet operation that you hide your IP address as your business still needs to be discovered by your customers but in the instances, as described above, that you do need to mask your IP, here are the most popular ways to do it:
- Using a proxy
The best way to mask your IP address is to use a proxy because they usually come with their IP address and location. Hence using a proxy is as good as using their IP and location to access the internet.
- Using a Virtual Private Network (VPN)
This is also another common way of hiding IP addresses. A VPN works just like a proxy — protecting your IP address and letting you access geo-location restricted websites, and it also encrypts your data as you browse the web.
- By using TOR
This is another great way of concealing your IP since TOR is a free, easily accessible, open-source software that is big on anonymous communications between computers and servers.
- Using your mobile network
Turning your mobile network on and off occasionally is a quick way to change your IP address, thereby making your traffic highly untraceable.
However, this has the disadvantage of making your connections very slow.
As an online business, the internet holds several benefits, but you occasionally need to protect yourself from it every once in a while.
And one way to protect yourself and your business is to hide your IP address during certain online activities. While there might be several ways to do this, the best and most effective remains are using a proxy server or a VPN. If you want to dig deeper into the topic, visit and read this article on how to hide your IP address.