What Can Someone Do with Your IP Address

What Can Someone Do with Your IP Address? (& How to Stop it in 2023)

Last Updated: December 17, 2022
What can someone do with your IP address? If yes, you’re at the right place. In this write-up, we’ll answer this question and show you how to be safe online. Let’s go!
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You might already know what’s Internet Protocol (IP); however, if you don’t, it’s the information that others can use to identify your device (computer, phone, etc.) online.

And an IP address allows internet users to communicate with one another. However, although IPs have some vital benefits, these do have a few dangers worth noticing.

The most dangerous one is that anyone on the internet can use your IP even without your knowledge. In fact, you’re identifiable to governments, hackers, and other internet users.

What can someone do with your IP address? If yes, you’re at the right place.

In this write-up, we’ll answer this question and show you how to be safe online. Let’s go!

How Can Someone Find Your IP Address?

There are a couple of ways through which an individual or a group of people can find your IP address. These are as follows:

  • From an email: Some internet and email providers reveal your IP address by sending an email. For example, Microsoft Outlook and Yahoo! show IP addresses in the email header. However, most of them no longer do that to anyone.
  • By borrowing your device: Various free sites tell you your IP address. So, anyone can borrow your device and know your IP address in seconds.
  • From web server logs: IP address is like a pass to connect online. Therefore, whenever you visit any site, you give your IP address. And these websites can review all the IP addresses if they want to.
  • By torrenting files: When you download files or other content from torrent websites, your IP address is visible to every swarm member.
  • By using free proxies: You might already know that free proxies cause a lot of trouble. In addition to poor online performance, they don’t hide your IP address. Therefore, if by any chance any malicious actor intercepts your internet traffic, you’ll regret it greatly.

What Can Someone Do with Your IP Address?

Okay, now that you know how someone can find your IP address, it’s time to address the gorilla in the room.

That is, what can someone do with your IP address? Here’s a list of things cybercriminals can do if they happen to find your IP address:

Hack Into Your Device

Once an attacker has your device’s IP address, they can target it for hacking to steal sensitive data.

In fact, hacking a PC is only possible if the cybercriminals have your local IP address. Having said that, it’s also possible with public IP addresses.

By leveraging your device’s IP address, hackers can use the transmission control and internet protocol (TCP/IP) interface to manage your online actions.

Therefore, your IP address can reveal to hackers the open and exposed TCP ports on your system.

Alternatively, they can even manipulate packets of info to inject spyware and steal your personal credentials.

Stalk You Using Your IP Address

Any tech-savvy person can easily use your IP address to determine where you’re (your location) because your IP provides sites and applications with information about your network location.

And sadly, it’s difficult to know if someone is using your IP to snoop on you.

You might already know that websites or applications require your IP address to accurately provide content.

So, they often don’t take the extra step to determine your present location.

However, potential stalkers might do this and use lookup tools to follow your movements. Don’t worry; it won’t lead them to your doorstep.

However, stalkers will know your commutes using your IP address. They’ll know where you connect from.

Additionally, hackers or other cybercriminals can update their feeds at any time to check where you last visited if you use the internet.

Attack the Server of Your Company

Since private IP addresses are hard to crack, most companies or businesses typically use these.

However, hackers can still disrupt your company’s systems by using its IP address, especially when the firewall of its server is weak.

To do that, the cyber attacker first needs access to your business’s private network and grabs a locally shared IP address.

They could get this through phishing or other social engineering. And that’s exactly why you should never click untrusted external links in SMSs or emails.

In addition, if your company shares the local network of its primary server with other staff, the attack worsens.

Even while the IP address itself doesn’t provide private information, there are several settings that the hacker may change to use TCP to download malware into the server.

When malware enters the picture, it may take control of the server and assist the hackers in achieving their objectives.

Make Malicious Deals Using Your IP Address

Anyone (most probably, cyber attackers) having your IP address can deal on your behalf.

Moreover, their actions may implicate you depending on how the cybercriminal impersonated you while using your IP address.

For instance, you might be prevented from using internet services if someone uses your IP to commit fraud, close unlawful trades, or download illegal content.

Denial of Service

One of the most violent attacks that can happen when hackers target your IP address is known as Distributed Denial of Service (DDOS).

Sometimes the motive for this kind of attack isn’t evident, although it typically has financial motivations.

And therefore, it frequently targets organizations and infrequently individuals.

The idea is to restrict your organization’s or your access to vital web services to interfere with your services.

But the main question is, how could your IP address be used in a DDOS attack against you?

Theoretically, it’s easy. However, the hacker performs a lot of work in the background.

In essence, once a hacker knows your IP address, they can direct traffic to your computer or server, making it unavailable and inaccessible.

How to Mask Your IP Address and Stay Safe

An IP address is one of the integral parts of online communication. The service facilitates cross-continental communication via email.

However, your IP address is easily accessible to everyone, which poses several concerns we’ve already covered.

As a result, it’s crucial to know how to mask your IP address and stay safe online.

The best way to hide your IP address is by using a Virtual Private Network (VPN).

It’ll protect your online privacy by encrypting all your internet traffic and masking your real IP address from third parties.

A trusted VPN service comes with many additional features besides the ability to switch between different IP addresses.

Therefore, we highly recommend that you use a VPN service. However, finding a good one can be tricky since hundreds of providers are in the market.

To make things easier for you, here are the three best VPNs that you can use to hide your IP address:

  1. NordVPN – 🏆 Winner!
  2. Surfshark
  3. Atlas VPN

1. NordVPN

NordVPN

Recommended Guide: NordVPN Review

For years, NordVPN has dominated the market; it is now the best VPN for hiding your IP address.

It undoubtedly earned a spot on everyone’s list of top VPN providers because of its 14 million global users, exclusive features, and varied and expanding VPN server network.

The business was founded in the year 2012 and is based in Panama, the greatest location for prominent VPN providers in terms of privacy protection.

Your data is safe and won’t be given to a third party because the nation has no data retention or censorship laws and isn’t a member of any of the surveillance alliances.

Online privacy is now a major issue; it permeates everything.

Additionally, everyone should prioritize a VPN that offers sufficient protection when picking one, given the growing threat to online data.

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Thankfully, NordVPN has your back. NordVPN has established itself as the best in the industry with best-in-class encryption (equivalent to the encryption used by some military bodies and government organizations).

A rigorous “zero-logging” policy, and a variety of special privacy and security features.

The most popular security option currently is the cutting-edge AES 256-bit encryption used by this VPN service from Panama.

It works nicely with the “Perfect Forward Secrecy” (PFC) technology, which provides a unique key every time you connect to the VPN and allows you to log in as a different user.

NordVPN employs two of the most well-liked and reliable VPN encryption technologies.

That is the extremely well-liked and secure IPSec/IKEv2 and TCP/UDP (the default) OpenVPN protocol (only for Mac devices at the moment; however, Windows users can manually install it). 

Furthermore, it is creating its own NordLynx encryption protocol (inspired by the innovative WireGuard). Additionally, NordVPN is the sole VPN service provider with two types of kill switches.

A network of about 5488 servers spread over 59 countries is what NordVPN provides to its users. When compared to other VPN providers, that is a sizable network.

Additionally, it continually broadens the scope of its network, which is obviously a good thing. Moreover, it dominates the VPN business.

The size of NordVPN’s server network is amazing regarding the number of servers.

Nevertheless, some providers give superior geographic coverage, particularly in regions with no NordVPN servers.

However, this does not imply that NordVPN is any less effective; rather, it outperforms its rivals in every way.

2. Surfshark

Surfshark

Recommended Guide: Surfshark VPN Review

Surfshark debuted in the British Virgin Islands and is one of the most well-known and dependable VPN service providers.

It employs more than 200 people and has over 2.4 million members worldwide.

Regardless of where it was founded, the company owns offices in several nations, including Lithuania, the Philippines, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, and Cyprus.

However, Surfshark’s no-log policy distinguishes it as one of the most dependable VPN service providers.

Additionally, the British Virgin Islands has no rules governing data retention, so it never gathers user data.

But there’s more! It is the top VPN for blocking ISP tracking since it breaks all links between your real IP address and your online identity.

A kill switch provided by the firm disables your traffic once your VPN connection stops or cannot shield your data from outsiders.

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Therefore, it masks your online identity, maintains encryption and torrent downloads, and provides security. That’s a really appealing feature.

In addition, Surfshark’s private DNS for the VPN server and leak prevention for the IPv4 stack gave additional security.

It even provides full RAM-only servers, further enhancing its consumers’ anonymity. Moreover, it has a special Camouflage Mode that increases secrecy.

In a VPN, encryption is also crucial. Your internet connection and any files you send or receive over the internet are encrypted using this code.

It also shields it from government intrusion, cyber criminals, and ISPs.

Surfshark uses the standard AES-256 GCM security encryption to safeguard its users’ data, just like most significant VPN companies.

Also, Surfshark encrypts all of your data using your VPN network, using the Advanced Encryption Standard or the Rijndael algorithm.

Its iOS, Android, Linux, Mac, and Windows applications are available.

Not only that, but it also supports FireTV, Android TV, and Apple TV. Additionally, Firefox and Google Chrome browser add-ons are available from Surfshark VPN.

Besides that, Surfshark VPN enables you to connect your VPN to additional devices like smart TVs and gaming consoles.

Over 3,200 VPN servers are available from the company in about 95 countries. While most of these servers are in Europe, they are also present in other parts of the globe.

With only four servers (South Africa, the UAE, Nigeria, and Israel) serving these regions, the Middle East and Africa currently have the fewest Surfshark servers.

3. Atlas VPN

Atlas VPN

Recommended Guide: Atlas VPN Review

In the twenty-first century’s second decade, Atlas VPN became one of the first VPN service providers.

It’s a freemium (free + premium) service that has become very well-known recently.

As of October 2021, The provider is a member of the Nord family of VPN services, including Surfshark and NordVPN.

Nord Security, the business that controls NordVPN, bought Atlas VPN.

No matter why you wish to employ a VPN, its main function is to provide online protection and anonymity.

Atlas VPN gives a lot more than we had anticipated for a freemium service. Isn’t it wonderful that, in terms of security, it’s a great VPN to hide your IP address?

Additionally, the US-based Delaware-based VPN service provider is immune to WebRTC, DNS, and IP breaches.

👉 Get Atlas VPN FREE

  • Atlas VPN is the best free VPN
  • Privacy Pro servers
  • 750 servers in 40+ locations
  • Unlimited simultaneous device connections
  • Great for: people seeking a freemium VPN
  • Compatible with: Windows, MacOS, Android, iPhone & iOS, Android TV, Fire TV Stick

Also, it offers excellent IPv6 leak prevention, something that even some of the biggest VPN companies don’t.

Like any other contemporary VPN service, Atlas VPN offers the most recent AES-256 security encryption. It is reliable, difficult, and unhackable.

Your online data, internet traffic, and personal information will all be secure because of the encryption level AltasVPN provides.

Perfect Forward Secrecy (PFS) and SHA-384 are added for maximum protection, guaranteeing that your internet connection is extra secure.

On top of that, Atlas VPN has its own personal DNS servers, providing increased safety from the rest of the world and facilitating access to platforms and websites that are blocklisted or otherwise restricted.

It only supports the IKEv2/IPsec security protocol, though. OpenVPN isn’t supported by Atlas VPN but has other reliable, quick, and secure VPN protocols.

Things are slightly iffy in terms of the logging policy. It certainly makes the same assurances about rigorously adhering to the zero-logging policy as any other VPN company.

However, digging deeper, you’ll discover that it logs and gathers certain information. It won’t harm your internet privacy, so don’t be concerned.

Furthermore, Atlas VPN is only compatible with the four main desktop and mobile operating systems: Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android. In fact, this VPN doesn’t offer any router options.

Also, there are no browser extensions for managing Atlas VPN. We anticipate the firm will soon make it compatible with other systems, so don’t worry.

The cost of Atlas VPN is one of its best features. It gives a very competitive and reasonable price.

In fact, you can connect up to two devices simultaneously to VPN servers in Los Angeles, New York, and Amsterdam without paying a dime to use its services.

You can transmit up to 5GB of data each month without any speed limitations on the free plan.

FAQs

Should I Be Worried If Someone has My IP Address?

It’s not always dangerous if someone knows your IP address because not everyone wants it for bad things.

However, it would be best if you took precautions, such as changing the IP addresses of your router and devices, to avoid cyberattacks.

Does a VPN Hide My IP Address?

Yes, a good VPN provider hides your IP address and gives you a new one associated with the VPN server you’re connected to.

It’s challenging to recognize or locate your device because thousands of VPN customers share a single IP address.

What to do If Someone Got My IP Address?

Don’t worry!

First, adjust the privacy settings on any app you use for instant messaging and other services.

Then ask your ISP to update your IP address.

You should change your router’s password and use long passwords that contain capital and lowercase letters, digits, and special characters.

Of course, don’t forget to guard against future IP leaks. Always be vigilant, and if necessary, conceal your IP address!

Is It Illegal for Someone to Have My IP Address?

It isn’t prohibited to view Someone’s IP address.

Not even purposefully looking for it. As long as it isn’t used for illegal purposes, it’s legal.

In fact, your IP address is legitimately used by many companies and organizations to collect various data, primarily for marketing purposes.

In Summary, the best VPNs in 2023 are;

Conclusion

Indeed, your IP address alone isn’t a serious threat to your digital security, internet network, and online privacy.

The IP address can, however, serve as a starting point for significant cyberattacks.

In fact, phishing, social engineering, and other hacking methods could be used by hackers to obtain private information.

👉 Get NordVPN’s FREE Trial

Using a trustworthy VPN whenever you’re online is the best action to take for maximum protection.

We suggest using NordVPN as it’s the market leader in all categories, including security. 

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Written by Trevor Cooke

The only safe internet is a private internet. You’ll see me at parties talking about cybersecurity, privacy, and VPNs. Yes, I’m that guy.
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Secure your digital life with NordVPN

Last Updated: December 17, 2022
What can someone do with your IP address? If yes, you’re at the right place. In this write-up, we’ll answer this question and show you how to be safe online. Let’s go!
What Can Someone Do with Your IP Address
EarthWeb is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Stay on top of the latest technology trends — delivered directly to your inbox, free!

Subscription Form Posts

Don't worry, we don't spam

Written by Trevor Cooke

The only safe internet is a private internet. You’ll see me at parties talking about cybersecurity, privacy, and VPNs. Yes, I’m that guy.

Latest Stories

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