What can my IP address reveal about me?
Your IP address can reveal a wide range of sensitive information about you. The easiest piece of information to get is your physical location, including your city, state/province, zip code and country. Whenever you change physical location, your IP address will also change. So you will have one IP address at home and a different IP address at a coffee shop.
It is also easy to figure out your Internet Service Provider (ISP) from your IP address because ISPs are each assigned a range of unique IP addresses. Therefore, your IP address can potentially be traced back to your ISP customer account to figure out your:
- Home address
- Phone number
- Credit card number
- Credit history
- Browsing history
- And more!
The websites you visit can also link your IP address to cookies, tracking software and other pieces of information, to figure out your interests, who you communicate with, and the online services that you use. This information can be used to target you with ads or your data can be sold to anyone who wants your private information. Did you know that even your device’s screen resolution can be combined with your IP address and other pieces of information to figure out your identity?
Even if these websites and your ISP do not knowingly release your information, they can still be compromised by hackers.
How do I hide my IP address and location?
Simply use a Virtual Private Network (VPN) to hide your IP address and location. By connecting to the Internet via a VPN server, you are able to use the virtual IP address of the VPN service, not your real public IP address.
This has the following benefits:
- A VPN masks your real location by using an IP address from a different location
- A VPN allows you to choose your IP address location and use online services that can only used in certain locations
- A logless VPN does not record your browsing history
- A VPN encrypts the data you send and receive, dramatically increasing your privacy and security