An IP address is a unique code that is assigned to internet users. Every time a person connects to a website or online service via the internet, that website can tell where the user is because of their IP address.
Websites can restrict access to content by disallowing IP addresses from particular countries. This is called geo-blocking. Any time you try to access content that is geo-restricted, your IP address informs the website that you are not eligible and you get a restriction notice.
An IP address also allows hackers to know where you are. This can result in DDoS attacks, and sometimes even direct hacking of your devices. For example, when people use P2P networks for torrenting – everyone else on the peer can see the user’s real IP address – opening themselves up to an attack from a malevolent person on that peer.
This is why people use Virtual Private Networks to conceal their real IP address for security and to pretend to be in a different country. The result is that nobody knows their real location (IP address). In addition, they can access censored or geo-restricted content.
New to VPNs? Check out our beginner’s guide!
What is my IP Address and Location?
Now that you understand what an IP address is – and why they are so important – you may be wondering:
How do I find my local IP address?
Whenever you connect to a website without using a VPN, the website service can automatically detect your IP address and location. This is because there is a direct link happening between your device and the website. For instance, by connecting to this page, right now, you are automatically providing us with your real IP address (unless you are using a VPN to conceal it).*
Check my IP
This page is designed to help you by showing you the data that you are automatically providing us with. Using our online tool, you can check what your IP address is anytime you want. That is useful for a number of reasons:
- To find out your real IP address.
- To check that a VPN is working (by concealing your real IP address with a remote VPN IP address of your choice).
What is IPV4?
Internet Protocol Version 4 (IPv4) is one of two types of commonly used IP address protocols. It is the fourth iteration of the Internet Protocol. It is a widely used protocol that provides the unique, numerical IP addresses required for Internet-connected devices to communicate. IPv4 is limited in that it uses 32-bit addresses.
What is IPV6?
Internet Protocol Version 6 (IPv6) is the sixth revision of the Internet Protocol. It varies from IPv4 only in that it uses 128-bit addresses. Those longer addresses overcome the limitations of IPv4 by permitting it to assign more addresses.
My IP address and Location
By telling the websites that you visit your real IP address, you are providing them with an easy method for identifying you and keeping tabs on you. They can tell when you visit their website and what you are interested in. This is done with a tool called an IP tracker. The IP address allows websites and services to know exactly where you are and to keep a database about your preferences.
It also allows the website service to block content if you are in a specific location.
How to Protect my IP Address
By using a Virtual Private Network, you can conceal your real IP address with that of a VPN server.
The best VPNs have a massive selection of servers located all around the world. When a VPN user connects to a VPN server their real IP address is hidden and they appear to be in a remote location. This allows VPN users to stop websites knowing where they really are. It also allows VPN users to pretend to be in a different country.
For an extensive look at all the reasons that you might want to get a VPN – and how to choose the perfect service for you – please look here.
*NB BestVPN.com do not collect any user data without consent including your IP Address information.