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What You Can Do With an IP Address, and How to Hide Yours
With someone’s IP address, you can learn a user’s general location, and disable some parts of their internet browsing device connected to the internet has an IP address, which helps websites identify your third-party programs or services, someone with your IP address could possibly block you from reaching certain you’re concerned about the security of your IP address, consider installing a firewall and Business Insider’s Tech Reference library for more stories.
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Every device that connects to the internet has an IP (Internet Protocol) address. The
IP address, which is composed of a series of numbers separated by decimal points, looks something like “198. 169. 0. 100. ” This number is used to help devices talk to each other and exchange data. Your network router has its own IP address, of course, as does every device on your network. But because these identifiers are so important, that means a hacker can potentially use them against you. Here’s what you should know about your IP address, and what it can be used for.
What you can do with an IP addressFirstly: most users won’t have to worry about any of this. It’s unlikely that any hacker would take the time to learn your specific IP address, and manipulate your specific device. There’s no real reward in it for them, so unless they love playing pranks, it would be a waste of fact, every website you visit already knows your IP address — that’s how they know to load on your computer, as opposed to someone else’ said, armed with your IP address, someone has the potential to take certain actions against your network. As such, it’s a good idea to keep your IP private from individuals you don’t could:
Block you from accessing websitesIt’s possible to use your IP address to prevent you from performing certain online activities. The most common example of this is blocking your ability to reach a certain site, or to post messages in forums or the comment section of web sites. In fact, this is the most common way that website administrators ban rulebreakers. It’s often referred to as an “IP Ban. “Your IP address can also be used to block or ban you from playing online games on some gaming services.
Learn your general geographic location Your IP address can reveal your geographic location. In most cases, this won’t be any more specific than your city and state. In rare cases, it could be as specific as your IP address also carries the name of your Internet Service Provider (the company that gives you internet access — think Spectrum, or Xfinity).
Your IP address signals where you are. ; William Antonelli/Business Insider
While there’s not a lot someone can do with this information, it can be combined with details from other sources to piece together data about your identity.
Perform a Denial of Service AttackKnowing your IP address, a malicious user may be able to perform a Denial of Service (DoS) attack, in which your network is flooded with data. It prevents normal traffic from getting through and overloads the network’s ability to function. However, these attacks are usually directed at large companies or websites — it’s rare that anyone would set up a DoS attack on a regular user.
How to protect your IP addressWhile there are some risks, your IP address alone poses very limited danger to you or your network. Your IP address can’t be used to reveal your identity or specific location, nor can it be used to hack into or remotely take control of your computer. That said, if you’re still concerned, a few simple precautions can help protect and foremost, your network should be protected with a firewall. Most routers have firewalls built in, but you should contact your router manufacturer or internet service provider to learn about your additional protection, you can use Virtual Private Network (
VPN) software. A VPN hides your IP address from all outside users, making it extremely difficult for someone to uncover your IP address or monitor your online activity.
NordVPN is one of the most popular VPN services.
NordVPN; William Antonelli/Business Insider
‘What is my IP? ‘: Here’s what an IP address does, and how to find yours’What is a good internet speed? ‘: The internet speeds you should aim for, based on how you use the internet’What is Wi-Fi calling? ‘: How to make calls from your smartphone even if you don’t have a cell signalHow to find the IP address of your internet router using a Mac, PC, iPhone, or AndroidNo, Bluetooth doesn’t use cellular data — here’s how the popular wireless technology connects your devices
Dave Johnson is a technology journalist who writes about consumer tech and how the industry is transforming the speculative world of science fiction into modern-day real life. Dave grew up in New Jersey before entering the Air Force to operate satellites, teach space operations, and do space launch planning. He then spent eight years as a content lead on the Windows team at Microsoft. As a photographer, Dave has photographed wolves in their natural environment; he’s also a scuba instructor and co-host of several podcasts. Dave is the author of more than two dozen books and has contributed to many sites and publications including CNET, Forbes, PC World, How To Geek, and Insider.
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What Can Someone Do With Your IP Address | Hotspot Shield
Can they hack me using my IP? Hacking someone through their public IP address is very difficult. That is because internet service providers and routers have firewalls. However, hackers who obtain your IP address can get ahold of some very valuable information about you, including your city, state, and ZIP code. With this location data, hackers can find out other personal information about can hackers get my IP? Each IP address is associated with ports, which act as doorways. Your IP address is a unique signature for your device, and ports are the doorways which allow applications and other devices to send information to you. If you are connected to the internet and running programs, your device could have ports open that might allow hackers to access your connection and learn your can they do with my PC remotely? If a hacker gains access to your PC remotely, such as through the use of malware or a trojan, they could be able to access all of the files on your computer, along with your internet history. The files you have could be accessed and manipulated and your internet passwords, financial information, and social media could all be at should I do to be safe? To keep yourself safe online, it is recommended that you hide your true IP address. This can be done through setting up a virtual private network, or VPN. A VPN provides you with a temporary IP address so that your ISP, government actors, and hackers don’t know who or where you are when you surf the web.
11 Ways People Can Spy On Your IP Address
(You don’t want to hear the last one…)
We took a poll. Most people say that the only people out there who know your IP address is your Internet Service Provider…the Cox Cables and Verizon’s of the world.
Those people are wrong.
The fact is, anybody with a little know-how can find, view and “capture” your IP address.
You need to understand this:
With the right technical know-how and a computer trick here and there, companies, government institutions, and the typical nerdy IT guy—and even your annoying teenage neighbor—can uncover your IP address.
I’m sure you wondering, “don’t they need my permission? ”
The answer is no. They can sniff out your IP address without your permission.
But you shouldn’t lose any sleep over that.
Still, it makes you wonder why someone would even care to know your IP address.
Well, people have different reasons for wanting to know it.
And different ways to get it.
Here’s why they want your IP.
A business may want to know your IP address because they simply want to run in through an IP lookup service to find out where “you” are located.
Fraudsters try to hide behind
an IP address.
They actually have a pretty good reason.
Let’s say an online retail customer whose mailing address says, “New York, NY” and buys thousands of dollars of fancy merchandise from a company. However, when that company captures the customer’s IP address, it figures out his location is really Russia or China. That’s a real problem.
It gets better.
In fact, it’s common for advertisers, companies, and service websites to “grab” your IP addresses if you’re visiting their site or if you click on ads on their website.
What they can find out is pretty interesting.
What country or state you’re in
What city you’re in…within a few miles (sometimes city blocks)
They can piece together a profile of your interests or online behaviors
There are ways to block your IP like you block a phone number…I’ll cover that a little bit later.
That’s only step one:
By knowing your IP address, an online Forum could “block” access to their chat room.
By knowing your IP address, an online subscription service could block you from accessing their content, because a sporting/special event is otherwise blacked out in your area.
It’s not that people can “use” your IP address, it’s more that by knowing it they can track you, target you, or block you.
Finally, you might want to sit down for this one.
With a subpoena and your IP address, law enforcement can ask your Internet provider for your name and home address and gain permission to hack into your emails.
But all this is just part of the story.
Now you need to know HOW people get your IP address—every day, with ease.
Get hidden now. »» I want to hide my IP
How Someone Might Get Your IP address.
Here are nearly a dozen ways people on the Internet can get YOUR IP address:
By borrowing your computer or smart device. If somebody uses or borrows your computer, they can find out your IP address simply by going to It pops right up.
By tapping into your wireless network. If your home network isn’t well secure, a stranger can tap into your wireless network. Also, if you let a guest use your network (you provide the password) they will know your IP address.
They pluck it out of your email. Relax: Most Internet/email providers today no longer include the IP address of someone sending an email. But smaller Internet Service Providers or people who set up their own email server which might still be revealing their IP address. Try our trace email tool to see.
Through an email HTML Bug. Thanks for your interest. This bug isn’t a virus or malicious. It’s simply a piece of code embedded in an image that’s included with an email you read. If you view the image (often just be opening the email), the bug simply tells the sender that you read the email…and it also provides your IP address. There are even services that help people set up email bugs like this. Check out
From web server logs. Here’s how the Internet works: Every time you visit a website, you leave your IP address. After all, it’s your digital pass to connect online. A website can (if they wish) scour their Web-server computers to review all the IP addresses, just to see the reach of their message or who’s a repeat visitor.
Who knew? But hang on, there’s more…
In Internet Forums. Joining a forum to share ideas or contribute to a discussion is getting more popular, especially in online education. Your “handle” may identify your voice and opinions, but your IP address identifies your computer to the administrator. (That’s how they ban you if you break their rules. )
From Blog Comments. Bloggers write in part to hear the opinions of their readers. Not only can the blog administrator read what you have said, but they can also uncover your IP address with a few keystrokes.
Through social media. Social media sites (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, etc. ) do not reveal IP addresses between users, but the site administrators indeed know your IP address. Also, if you click on an ad or link on the site, they will capture your IP address.
Out of messaging Apps. Your mobile phone uses an IP address every time you engage someone through a messaging app, such as WhatsApp and Viber. Messaging app usage is growing incredibly fast. Your IP address is invisible to the person you message, but if-and-when you click on a link in a message, the website you sent it to has access to your IP address. There are sites like and that you can use to create trackable links.
Via your work email. The email header on your office’s email could reveal your IP address, and a clever IT-minded person can easily use it to find the location of your workplace. Try our trace email tool.
Through a court order. In late 2016, a new law went into effect that sent chills down the spines of millions of people. Revisions to a U. S. federal security measure called Rule 41 gave the FBI and others more leeway while investigating online activity. The request for subpoenas to get IP addresses (and home addresses) is much easier now.
Let’s put it this way…
You’re fighting a losing battle when it comes to preventing someone from capturing your public IP address. But that doesn’t mean all is lost. You can get the upper hand in this cat-and-mouse game of shielding your IP address from the world.
Fight back (and win! ) with an alternative IP address.
As you can see, your IP address is “capturable” most of the time while you’re online. But you can make sure that the IP address they capture isn’t traceable back to you by 99% of the time.
By using a Virtual Private Network, or VPN. A VPN, which is an affordable, fee-based online service networking that masks your actual IP address and routes you through another network with a different IP address.
Real IP address
Spoofed IP address
And you want to know the best part?
That “borrowed” IP address is the only one anyone in any of the above categories will see.
There’s no time to waste.
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7 Ways Someone Ca Grab Your IP Address [INFOGRAPHIC]
Frequently Asked Questions about what can you do with a person’s ip address
What information can someone get from my IP address?
That is because internet service providers and routers have firewalls. However, hackers who obtain your IP address can get ahold of some very valuable information about you, including your city, state, and ZIP code. With this location data, hackers can find out other personal information about you.
How can someone use your IP address?
Here are nearly a dozen ways people on the Internet can get YOUR IP address:By borrowing your computer or smart device. … By tapping into your wireless network. … They pluck it out of your email. … From web server logs. … In Internet Forums. … From Blog Comments. … Out of messaging Apps. … Via your work email.More items…