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How to Hide Your IP address (8 easy methods, 6 are Free) – Comparitech
I’ll show you how I hide my IP address as well as several other ways to change or hide an IP address free of charge. Your IP address can be used to track your device and location over the internet, so start hiding your IP now!
@pabischoff UPDATED: March 31, 2021
An IP address is a string of numbers and decimals that identifies your device and location. If you’re connected to the internet, then you have an IP address.
Your public IP address is unique and visible to everyone on the internet, so it can be used to track you and wall you off from region-locked content.
Because I like privacy and dislike censorship, I prefer to hide my IP address from internet providers, hackers, governments, advertisers and others. In this article, I’ll explain a few free and paid methods you can use to hide your IP address, as well as a few ways to change your IP address.
What’s my IP address?
In order to hide your IP address, you first have to know what it is. This is easy; just go to Google and enter “what’s my IP address? ”
You’ll see something like this:
123. 45. 67. 89
Specifically, that’s an IPv4 address. Some of you might have IPv6 connectivity, although it hasn’t been adopted everywhere yet. If your internet provider offers IPv6 on its network, you can look up your IPv6 address as well.
It’ll look something more like this:
For the most part, these two addresses serve the same purpose. If you want to hide your IPv4 address, then you’ll probably want to hide your IPv6 address as well, if you have one.
You can learn more about the differences between IPv4 and IPv6 here, but I won’t get too deep into that in this article.
Your IP address probably changes once in a while due to how the internet works, but you are the only one with your current IP address on the entire internet. Similar to physical addresses, IP addresses allow computers on the internet to find each other and communicate. IP addresses are an integral part of the IP protocol, the foundation on which the internet is built. Again, I’ll sidestep the nitty gritty details on how the IP protocol works.
8 ways to hide your IP address
#1. Use a VPN to hide your IP address
A VPN, or Virtual Private Network is a software service that encrypts all of the data sent to and from the internet and routes it through a VPN server in another location. The VPN server acts as a middleman between your device and the internet, so websites and online apps only see the server’s IP address and not your own.
Most VPNs are subscription services that cost a few dollars per month for access to hundreds or even thousands of servers around the world. You just need to sign up and download the apps for your devices. After that, hiding your IP address just takes a couple of clicks. It’s really easy.
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If NordVPN. isn’t quite what you’re looking for, you might want to try Surfshark or ExpressVPN. These services have plenty to offer, and come with significant discounts for long-term subscriptions.
Here’s how to hide your IP address:
First off, check your current IP address by Googling, “what’s my IP? ”
Sign up for a VPN. We recommend NordVPN.
Download the VPN app onto your device. Windows and Mac users usually get their app from the provider’s website. iOS and Android users get their app from the App Store and Google Play, respectively.
Install the VPN app and run it.
Sign in using the account credentials you created in step two.
Select a server or server location. Your new IP address will be that of this server.
Click the Connect button or double-tap the server to initiate a connection.
Once the connection has been established, you will have a new IP address. To confirm, Google “what’s my IP? ” Your new IP address should be different than in step one.
Here’s a video of how to hide your IP address with a VPN
Most commercial VPN providers, including NordVPN, use shared IP addresses, meaning that all VPN users connected to the same server are hidden behind the same IP address–that of the VPN server.
A VPN that uses shared IP addresses not only hides your real IP address, it makes you indistinguishable from all the other users. Your online activity cannot be traced back to a single user, adding a significant layer of anonymity.
If you’re serious about hiding your IP address, it’s vital to get a VPN with these features:
Private DNS servers – DNS works like a phone book for the internet by translating domain names like “” into IP addresses that your device can use to communicate. By default, you probably use DNS servers operated by your Internet Service Provider (ISP) or Google, which can see your IP address when you request a website, even when connected to a VPN. For this reason, it’s important to use a VPN that operates its own DNS servers so you never expose your IP address to a third party.
Leak protection – VPNs are meant to protect all the internet data traveling to and from your device, but sometimes they leak. When they leak, they expose your IP address. Get yourself a VPN that has DNS, IPv6, and WebRTC leak prevention.
Kill switch – A kill switch or network lock cuts off your entire device from the internet if the VPN connection drops for some reason, preventing anything from being sent from your real IP address without the VPN’s protection.
No-logs policy – The VPN provider should not record or store logs of your internet activity or any connection details that could be used to identify you.
2. Use a proxy to hide your IP address
Like a VPN, a proxy acts as a middleman between your device and the internet. Websites and apps see the IP address of the proxy server and not your real IP address.
In fact, a VPN is technically a type of proxy. But when I say “proxy, ” I’m usually referring to either an SSL, SSH, or SOCKS proxy. These types of proxies typically lack the encryption and other security features offered by VPNs, but they do hide your IP address from websites. They can be configured in existing apps like your browser or, like a VPN, use a third-party app.
Proxies usually don’t usually include DNS traffic, so your website requests still go to a third-party DNS server that can see your real IP address. VPNs with leak protection don’t have this problem. Furthermore, your real IP could be exposed if the proxy connection drops for some reason.
Because proxies lack the authentication of VPNs, they are also more susceptible to man-in-the-middle attacks, in which an attacker can pose as the proxy server to steal your data.
Some VPNs offer HTTPS (SSL) proxies as browser extensions for Chrome and Firefox. These do a decent job of protecting your browser, but other apps and DNS requests can still expose your IP address.
3. Use Tor to hide your IP address for free
Tor, short for The Onion Router, is a decentralized worldwide anonymity network operated by thousands of volunteers. When you connect to Tor, your internet traffic is encrypted and routed through a random sequence of these volunteer “nodes, ” which are sort of like proxy servers. Websites can only see the IP address of the last server in the sequence, called the exit node.
Each time you visit a website, the sequence of nodes changes. This makes it practically impossible to trace activity back to the original IP address.
The easiest way to use Tor is to download and install the Tor Browser. It works just like a barebones version of any other browser like Chrome and Firefox, and it’s completely free.
There are drawbacks, however. Tor is slow and not suitable for torrenting or streaming–stick to web browsing. Furthermore, Tor is often associated with criminal activity because it can be used to access the darknet and illicit websites. Some websites block connections from known Tor nodes, and your ISP might frown upon its use.
See also: How to set up a hidden Tor service
4. Connect to a different network to change your IP address
Whenever you change networks, your IP address changes as well. So if you think the IP address you’ve been using has been compromised, blocked, or tracked, then you can change networks to get a new one.
You can connect to a public or private wifi network, or use your smartphone’s mobile data connection. Note that public wifi hotspots and open networks can be hunting grounds for hackers that can take advantage of the lack of encryption and authentication. Opt for networks that require a password, if possible.
5. Ask your ISP to change your IP address
Your ISP is the entity that decides who gets what IP address. So if you want to change your IP address for some reason, try giving them a call. You’ll need your account information on hand, as well as your current IP address.
It shouldn’t be too hard to get a different IP address, but don’t expect it to stay the same forever. Because IP addresses are constantly being recycled in order to preserve the limited number of available IP addresses, your IP address will probably change once in a while. These are called dynamic IP addresses.
You could request a static IP address that never changes, but there might be an application process and an extra fee.
6. Unplug your modem to change your IP address
This isn’t guaranteed to work, but you can often get a new IP address by unplugging your internet modem and plugging it back in again. When you lose the connection to your ISP, your old IP address will get recycled. When you re-establish a connection, you’ll be assigned a new IP address.
The longer you leave the modem unplugged, the more likely this tactic will work. Try leaving it unplugged overnight if you have to.
Your ISP must use dynamic IP addresses for this to work. Most do.
7. Use a NAT Firewall to hide your private IP address
If you use a wireless router to connect to the internet, it’s likely that you’re behind a NAT firewall. In simplest terms, a NAT firewall allows multiple devices on the same network to use the same public IP address but unique private IP addresses. Network Address Translation (NAT) forwards requests and data from the private IP addresses of individual devices to their online destination under the router’s public IP address. This conserves address space (the number of available IP addresses) and prevents unsolicited inbound communication with potentially dangerous computers on the internet.
A NAT firewall doesn’t hide your public IP address, but your private IP address. All devices connected to a NAT-enabled router will share a public IP address. The NAT firewall will prevent any online communication that isn’t in response to a request you sent from a private IP address. All other requests and data packets are discarded because they don’t have a private IP address to which they can be forwarded.
8. Renew your IP address to change your private IP address
As mentioned above, if you’re connected to an internet router by wifi or ethernet cable, then you’ve probably got a private, or local, IP address as well. It’s not as important to keep this IP address a secret while online, but there might be instances in which you need to change it.
You can do this by entering a few simple commands into your Windows Command Prompt or Mac Terminal.
How to renew your IP address on Windows:
Search for the Command Prompt and right click it to Run as administrator
Enter ipconfig /release
Enter ipconfig /renew
You should now see a new local IP address.
How to renew your IP on MacOS:
Click the Apple menu and open System Preferences
Highlight the network that you’re connected to in the left pane
Select the TCP/IP tab
Click Renew DHCP Lease
Your Mac will now have a different private IP address.
You can never hide your IP address from your ISP
It’s not possible to hide your IP address from your ISP. It makes sense: my ISP provides me with internet service and therefore an IP address. Without an IP address, I can’t connect to the internet.
VPNs and proxies don’t literally replace your existing IP address. They just mask your IP address with one of their own so that other computers and servers on the internet can’t see yours. But your real IP address is still there, communicating through the proxy or VPN server as an intermediary.
Even though you can never hide your real IP address from your ISP, you can hide the content and destination of your internet activity with a VPN. The encryption prevents your ISP from seeing what information you send and receive, and the ISP can only see that you’re connected to a VPN server—not the websites or apps you use. Conversely, the VPN hides your real IP address from websites and apps, but they still see the contents and destination of your internet communications.
The only parties that can see all three—your real IP address, the websites you visit, and what data is transmitted between the two—are you and your VPN provider. For this reason, I only recommend VPNs that don’t store any logs of your online activity.
How to hide an IP address in Google Chrome – Switcherry VPN
Hello, my name is Nicholas Kats. I am an employee of Switcherry VPN. In this article, you will learn what an IP address is and why, why it sometimes has to be hidden, and how to do it for users of the Google Chrome browser.
Google Chrome – the most popular browser in the world. Despite the fact that Chrome is considered one of the most secure browsers, it, like all other browsers, allows the leakage of critical information that makes it possible to identify the user. This information contains, among other things, your IP address, which immediately identifies the country and region where you live.
And not only the country – knowing the IP address of the user can learn a lot about it, almost everything, up to the home address, which is known to his Internet provider. And the Internet service provider records all the network activity of its customers in log files. According to the legislation of most countries, these log files must be stored on the servers of the Internet provider for at least six months and presented to the employees of government agencies on demand.
Thus, if you do not take any security measures and protect your personal data during your online activity, then all the most confidential information about you can fall into the hands of outsiders and can be used against you. The purpose of this article is to tell users of the Google Chrome browser how to remain anonymous while surfing the web and how to protect themselves from the leakage of personal data.
Read our review “How to hide your IP in Windows“.
Table of contents1 What is IP2 How to hide IP in Google Chrome browser2. 1 Anonymizers2. 2 Proxy extensions for the Google Chrome browser2. 3 Buy a proxy server and configure the operating system to work with it2. 4 VPN extensions for Google Chrome3 Why you should try the SwitcherryVPN extension for Google Chrome
What is IP
IP-address (Internet Protocol Address) – is a digital identifier assigned to each server, computer, or any other device connected to the Internet. There are two types of IP addresses: old IPv4 (version 4 IP addresses) and new IPv6 (version 6 IP addresses). IP addresses of the 4th version are a 32-bit binary number, which is usually represented as four decimal numbers separated by dots. A typical IPv4 address looks like this: 157. 240. 224. 35 or so: 91. 198. 174. 192. Due to the lack of IP addresses in version 4 (the total number of IPv4 addresses can not be more than 4. 3 billion), a new Internet addressing system was developed – IPv6. The IP address of version 6 is a 128-bit binary number represented by a series of hexadecimal numbers separated by a colon. Example IPv6-address: 2001:67c:2660:425:21b:21ff:feb5:b89c.
The IP addressing system allows computers and other devices to exchange information on the network. Just as any person receiving mail has a personal unique email address, any device connected to a network has its own unique IP address. And if the user does not take any measures to protect personal data, then the IP address of his computer or tablet can be identified as easily as by his postal address.
Read more about this here.
How to hide IP in Google Chrome browser
There are several proven methods of hiding IP address in Chrome
Many Internet users hide their IP address not only for security reasons. Spoofing a real IP address allows users to change their geolocation and thereby gain access to blocked sites and streaming services. Since prices in many online stores depend on the customer’s location, changing the geolocation also makes it possible to make purchases online at minimal prices.
There are several proven methods of hiding and spoofing an IP address in Chrome: installing various browser extensions designed to ensure anonymity and security of surfing on the network, as well as using anonymizers, proxy servers and VPN.
Using anonymizers is the easiest way to hide your real IP address. The main function of anonymizers is to allow users to visit websites that are blocked in their countries for one reason or another. In most cases, anonymizers refer to web anonymizers – online services that allow their users to surf the web anonymously.
How anonymizers work
For the average user, the web anonymizer looks like a regular website. The main element of the web anonymizer is the address bar, in which the user enters the address of the target web page. The anonymizer uploads this page to its server and, after processing, sends it to the user on behalf of its server. That is, the web page that the user needs turns out to be «inside» the anonymizer’s web page. The anonymity and confidentiality of the user are ensured as follows:
IP-address server anonymizer substitutes the user’s IP address, so that the user can visit web resources that are blocked by their owners for viewing in their region;
IP-address of the visited web page is also substituted with the IP address of the anonymizer server, which makes it possible to overcome the censorship and blocking of the Internet provider.
New IP Now
A popular anonymizer that allows the user to change the geolocation and choose a new IP.
To visit the site you need, select the appropriate geolocation and IP from the list, enter the site address in the Connect To field, and tap Enter.
Hide My Ass
Advanced web anonymizer that allows you to select a new geolocation and set up a connection.
Select the desired geolocation from the drop-down list, enter the address of the site you plan to visit in the upper field, and tap Enter.
4 Ever Proxy
One of the most advanced web anonymizers. In addition to the server that spoofs the user’s IP address, you can also choose an intermediate web server. A secure «tunnel» connection is created between the two servers, which maximizes the security and confidentiality of the connection.
Select a new geolocation, the location of the intermediate web server, enter the address of the web page in the upper field, and click the Go button or tap Enter.
The simplest web-proxy that does not allow the user to select geolocation.
The only useful element of the page is the address bar in the center. Enter the address of the site you need in it, click on the Go button or tap Enter.
Very simple HTTP web anonymizer without advertising.
Is it safe to use anonymizers
Only anonymizers that use the secure HTTPS protocol can be considered relatively secure, since they encrypt traffic, protecting the user from surveillance by supervisory authorities and hacker attacks. Many old web anonymizers, for example Anonymouse, still use the insecure HTTP protocol. It is not recommended to use such anonymizers! You can also not trust the new, newly created web anonymizers, since it may well be that they were created by hackers to intercept passwords and other sensitive user data.
Anyway we strongly recommend that you do not use web anonymizers to transmit critical information, such as usernames and passwords of e-mail and social networks, bank card data, bitcoin wallets, etc. Use web anonymizers only for normal surfing on the network!
The main disadvantage of web anonymizers is the ease of blocking them. In fact, a web anonymizer by definition looks like a normal website and can therefore be blocked by an Internet service provider very easily. For example, in China, Iran, and Russia, the vast majority of popular anonymizers are blacklisted and blocked by local regulatory authorities. Therefore, for residents of these and similar countries, almost all web anonymizers are inaccessible and useless.
Features of web anonymizers
not all web anonymizers have the ability to choose geolocation. A simple anonymizer automatically redirects all user requests to the nearest unloaded server;
the ability to unblock streaming services in practice is difficult due to the fact that it is not always possible to choose a new geolocation, as was mentioned in the previous paragraph, and if such a possibility exists, the choice of available IP addresses is always very limited and, most likely, blocked. Also, due to the fact that web anonymizers significantly reduce the speed of the Internet, they can not be used to watch streaming videos;
downloading from torrent trackers is extremely difficult and unsafe, since all web anonymizers significantly reduce the data transfer speed and do not protect against tracking. Web anonymizers are created exclusively for surfing the web!
web anonymizers are available for all devices that have any modern browser installed, including Google Chrome.
Proxy extensions for the Google Chrome browser
Another way to protect your anonymity and hide your IP address for Google Chrome browser users is to install the Proxy extension. By default, the Google Chrome browser uses the system settings for using a proxy server. Proxy extensions for Chrome make it possible to use a proxy server only for this browser. That is, the system settings are not affected, other browsers running simultaneously with Google Chrome will still access the Internet directly, without using a proxy server.
How Proxy extensions work
After installing, configuring, and enabling the Proxy extension, all browser traffic will go through the intermediate proxy server specified by the user in the settings. At the same time, the «native» IP address of the user is replaced by the IP address of the proxy server. If the connection between the browser and the proxy server is encrypted (when using an HTTPS proxy), the Internet service provider will not be able to censor and block access to prohibited sites.
Popular Proxy Extensions
Proxy SwitchyOmega – this extension allows you to manipulate dozens of proxy servers by setting the conditions for their use in the parameters. The user specifies the protocol, IP address, port number, and proxy servers. Also, in the settings, you can specify which proxy servers to use when visiting certain sites, make lists of exceptions, etc.
Falcon Proxy – popular Proxy extension for Google Chrome browser.
Proxy Helper – the simplest proxy server manager for the Google Chrome browser.
Best Proxy Switcher
Best Proxy Switcher – this extension offers you to use free proxy servers or buy access to paid VPN servers. Unfortunately, most free proxy servers are not anonymous, do not encrypt traffic, and significantly reduce the speed of the Internet.
Is it safe to use Proxy extensions
Proxy extensions themselves are not malicious programs, but the use of proxy servers does not always guarantee security and anonymity. Proxy servers hide the user’s IP address, but they can transmit critical information about the user that can be used to identify the user. Also, the Internet service provider, using modern technology of deep packet analysis (DPI), can determine what type of content the user is viewing, what files he downloads, whether he uses a torrent, etc.
Proxy Extension Features
Proxy extensions for Google Chrome provide the user with the ability to choose geolocation (the appropriate location of proxy servers is selected);
free open proxy servers are blocked by the administration of streaming services. But even users of paid proxy servers can not always overcome the blocking of streaming services, since the entire range of available IP addresses of companies that provide proxy server rental services is usually known to the owners of video services, and is blacklisted;
to download from torrent trackers, you need to install an additional extension – the Torrent client for Google Chrome. Only paid proxy servers allow you to freely download files from torrents, but your Internet service provider, using deep packet analysis technology, can determine that you are using a torrent and block your Internet access.
Proxy extensions can be installed on any device that has the Google Chrome browser installed.
Buy a proxy server and configure the operating system to work with it
Installing the Proxy browser extension protects traffic originating only from this browser. But you can make sure that all the computer traffic goes through the selected proxy server. To do this, in the network settings of the operating system, you must specify that you want to use a proxy server and enter its parameters – IP address and port number.
How it works
Just like the Proxy extension for the browser, but it protects not just one browser, but the entire computer. From a consumer point of view, proxy servers are divided into commercial, for the use of which you have to pay and free (open) proxies.
Paid proxy servers. Now there are a huge number of companies in the world that provide proxy server rental services. In some of them, you can purchase a specific proxy server with a specified geolocation and a static IP address, while others offer to install software that allows customers to independently select the location and IP address of the proxy server and change these parameters «on the fly» for IP address rotation.
Open proxy servers. The main disadvantage of free proxies is their unstable operation and short lifetime. The «life» of free proxy servers is usually quite short. On the Internet, you can find many sites that publish regularly updated lists of «live» free proxy servers. Use open proxy servers with great caution, as they do not guarantee security. In addition, some free proxy servers are created by hackers specifically to intercept confidential information.
Is the method safe
Everything that was said above about the security of the Proxy extension for the browser also applies to proxy servers. Paid, highly anonymous HTTPS proxy servers provided for rent by reliable companies can be considered relatively secure. Using open free proxies is always associated with the risk of personal data theft.
VPN extensions for Google Chrome
VPN extensions allow you to choose geolocation, replace the user’s IP address, and securely encrypt traffic. Using VPN extensions is the best way to protect yourself from tracking and circumvent censorship and geo-blocking.
In fact, the VPN extension for Google Chrome is an ordinary VPN client that works «inside» the browser. Immediately after the VPN client starts, it creates a secure connection to the VPN server – a so-called «tunnel». All browser traffic passes through this «tunnel». The user’s IP address is substituted with the IP address of the VPN server, the data is encrypted and protected from tracking. In this case, the system settings are not affected, other browsers work on the network directly, under the user’s own IP.
Popular VPN Extensions for Google Chrome
Very important! You can install multiple VPN extensions for your Chrome browser at once, but while one extension is running, all other extensions must be disabled. Otherwise, the extensions will conflict with each other.
DotVPN – one of the most popular extensions for the Chrome browser. The choice of geolocation is limited to 30 countries. Only the paid version of the extension works.
– a VPN extension for the romanian company’s Chrome browser. Geolocation is limited to 20 countries. It works only after registration and payment for access.
Tunnello VPN – this extension has a seven-day trial period, after which you must pay for access.
Hotspot Shield Free VPN Proxy
Hotspot Shield Free VPN Proxy – a popular VPN extension for the Chrome browser. In the free version, you can only connect to US VPN servers. To get the ability to choose geolocation, you need to buy premium access.
Switcherry VPN is an extension for the Google Chrome browser of our company. It appeared in the Google Chrome store quite recently, but has already managed to gain great popularity among users due to the high connection speed and stable operation. The main thing that distinguishes our extension from the products of competitors is a large selection of countries, the full operation of the free version of the program and the low price of premium access.
Currently, a VPN is considered the safest way to change the IP address and protect personal data on the network. The VPN extension for Google Chrome will help users bypass censorship and geo-blocking, ensuring complete anonymity and privacy.
all full-featured VPN extensions have a choice of location;
all VPN extensions are able to unblock streaming services, but 100% success is not guaranteed;
secure download from torrent trackers is guaranteed, but the download speed may decrease slightly;
VPN extensions for Google Chrome are available for all devices and operating systems that have the Chrome browser installed.
Why you should try the SwitcherryVPN extension for Google Chrome
We have made our extension for Google Chrome as user-friendly as possible. Distinctive features of the SwitcherryVPN extension for Google Chrome:
easy to install and configure;
changing the current geolocation with a couple of clicks;
a large selection of geolocations – more than 70 countries are available for registered users! Our app will help you easily unblock Netflix and other streaming services, bypass censorship and geo-blocking;
the highest possible data transfer speed, which is not available to our competitors, allows you to easily download files from torrents and watch 4k video streaming;
the basic version of the extension is completely free, premium access (more professional settings) for a small fee.
Installing the SwitcherryVPN extension for Google Chrome and other products of our company will ensure your privacy, protect you from surveillance, protect you from hacker attacks, and raise your network security to the highest level.
Frequently Asked Questions about ip premium
How do I hide my IP on VPN?
Here’s how to hide your IP address:First off, check your current IP address by Googling, “what’s my IP?”Sign up for a VPN. … Download the VPN app onto your device. … Install the VPN app and run it.Sign in using the account credentials you created in step two.Select a server or server location.More items…•Mar 31, 2021
How do I hide my IP address on Google Chrome?
Another way to protect your anonymity and hide your IP address for Google Chrome browser users is to install the Proxy extension. By default, the Google Chrome browser uses the system settings for using a proxy server. Proxy extensions for Chrome make it possible to use a proxy server only for this browser.May 14, 2021
What is Premium IP?
Premium IP is an advanced system of IPv4 addresses control. It is fully integrated with the server management system, so its installation is fully automatized. Thanks to this, when we migrate your store to another server (i.e. from shared to dedicated), the system remembers about your individual IPv4 address.