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How to Protect Your IP Address

Whether you are applying online games or chatting with friends on social media, your IP address is what can get you identified. This IP is the Internet Protocol address or a numeric address which identifies devices and computers from each other and lets them communicate on the Internet. Every device that you use will need this address for sending data to another device. What is a cause for concern is that using this address, attackers can target your site.

Cyber criminals may be on the search for your dedicated IP address for many different reasons. It could be for carrying out large-scale attacks or even for messing with you just like that. Attackers may want your IP address to download illegal content like pirated movies and videos. They may use the IP to get hold of your location for launching a large-scale attack. For example, they could be searching for IP addresses in areas where the users are not very well informed about security. This will allow them to penetrate systems easily. Criminals can also use this address for launching a variety of attacks by targeting your network directly. One such attack is the DDoS attack where they use already-infected machines for flooding targeted servers with requests in order to cripple them.

Steps to protect your IP address:

- You could start by using a VPN or Virtual Private Network which protects the data online through encryption or proxy channeling. This can successfully keep your IP address hidden and redirects the traffic via a separate server. So, it is much safer for you to go online. In this way, using VPN services is perhaps the easiest and most effective ways to hide the IP address. You may pay monthly charges to avail of a VPN; there are also free services but these may not be enough for gaming or streaming purposes. You may also use a proxy which acts like an extra hub for processing Internet requests and hides your IP.

- Another useful technique to protect your IP address is to update the firewall rules and routers. The router is responsible for sending data between multiple networks and the firewall is designed to stop unauthorized access. This is why you must keep changing the router password from time to time because attackers can use default passwords for breaking into the network.

- You can also change the privacy settings on your instant messaging apps. In short, you should only permit connections from your contacts. You must not accept messages and calls from unknown people. When you change the settings to "private", others cannot track your IP address as people who do not know you will never be able to find you.

- A fast way to change the IP address when you think that your may be compromised is to use cell phone data. Since this is a different system, there will be a distinct IP address. This measure is good for emergencies when the IP is under attack but you cannot rely on mobile data for help.

- Finally, the best way to change the IP address to protect it is to reach out to your Internet Service Provider. The static IP is hard to change because it involves a time consuming process with the Internet Service Provider (ISP). The good news is that most ISPs will give you dynamic IPs.

Securing your IP through such steps is the best way to stay protected against attacks which can come your way.

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