Why You Should Keep your IP Address Private (And How To Do It)
Your IP address is a vital part of your online experience. That said, it can also be a potential weak point for anyone looking to exploit or steal your sensitive information. Protecting your IP address is crucial if you want to ensure a safe and private online experience. With that in mind, by the end of this page, you’ll learn why it’s essential to keep your IP address private and the three best tips on how you can ensure that.
How Can Anyone Find Your Real IP Address?
Much like your personally identifiable number, your IP address is a string of numbers that’s unique only to you and no other online users in any other location worldwide. And, since your IP address often holds a lot of your private information, some people may look to capitalize on this. Malicious online users can get ahold of your IP address in many different ways. Nevertheless, here are some of the most common ones:
- From an Email – Some email providers, most notably Yahoo and Microsoft Outlook, include your IP address when you send an email. All the other person has to do is check the header, and they’ll find out your IP address.
- Through a Link – Whenever you click on a link, whoever owns the server you’re trying to access will see your IP address along with your access request. If this link happens to be malicious, problems will occur.
- From a Torrent Site – When you download something from a torrent site, everyone who’s eider seeding or downloading the same content can see your IP address. This is how most negligent online pirates get in trouble.
What Can Anyone Do With Your IP?
So, if a hacker or any malicious person gets ahold of your IP address, is there anything they can do with it? The short answer – yes. They can cause you a number of headaches by doing the following:
Someone Could Hack Your Device
The first and most obvious thing you should worry about is that a hacker can get inside your device by leveraging the information he obtained from the IP address. Although there are thousands of ports for every IP address, a persistent hacker can take advantage of one of them and perform a brute-force attack to steal your valuable information or even take over your device.
You Could Experience Real Life Disturbances
Not many online users know that your IP address actually shows your location, more precisely, the city you’re in. If the IP address gets into someone with bad intentions, they could quickly narrow down the area and find your house through the exposed IP address.
Someone Could Impersonate You
Lastly, this is a potential problem that can have some severe implications. Criminals who obtain your IP address and some additional information can impersonate you online by exploiting your personally identifiable information.
Even more worryingly, a malicious attacker can set up illegal activities through your IP address. For example, they can download illegal content, attack government sites or steal information from other online users, all from the safety of your IP address.
How To Keep Your IP Address Private
With everything above in mind, it’s safe to say protecting your IP address private and away from anyone else’s eyes should be one of your top online security priorities. From this perspective, here are some of the most efficient ways you can protect your IP address:
- Update your Router Settings – The first thing you can do is regularly update your router settings and switch up passwords. In line with that, also consider updating your firewall, as this can also be a significant step towards ensuring protection for your IP address.
- Customize Your Privacy Settings – Apps and websites rarely put out privacy in the first place. That’s why you should be the one who takes matters into your own hands. Adjust settings to “private” for all social media and online communication services you use.
- Get a VPN Service – Lastly, the most effective way of protecting your IP address is to sign up with a VPN service. It will completely mask your home IP and encrypt your entire network, making it near impossible for anyone to sneak a peek. Equally important, no online activities could be traced back to you, and no one could exploit your sensitive private information.
At ZoogVPN, we offer you the best-valued VPN service on the market. At less than a couple of bucks per month, you can rely on over a thousand IPs with unlimited bandwidth and unlimited device support. What’s more, you can try out our 10GB/Month free subscription plan for as long as you wish. Sign up with ZoogVPN today and make sure your IP address is private at all times.