How to find your IP address whenever you need it

When you visit an external website, or open up a mobile application, only your public IP address is visible.

What Is My IP Address?

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What Is an IP Address?

An IP (Internet Protocol) address is a unique identifier for each device on a network, such as the internet. When you connect to the internet, your internet service provider (ISP) assigns you an IP address.

The primary purpose of an IP address is to allow web-connected devices to find and communicate with each other. Without specific IP addresses, devices wouldn’t be able to send and receive information from each other over the internet.

The secondary purpose of an IP address is for location addressing. In other words, to place your device in an approximate physical location in the world (also known as geolocation).

In a way, IP addresses are comparable to postal addresses.

In a typical household, multiple devices are connected to a single internet connection through a router (or combination of routers). In this scenario, all these devices have the same public IP address.

If one of these devices (e.g. your smartphone) is connected to the internet through a wireless carrier, it would have a different IP address than a device connected to your home router (and through an internet service provider).

What Is My IP Location?

When an IP checker tool detects an IP address, it queries a database (e.g. ARIN) to find the specific area in the world where the IP address is mapped to. This ‘area’ is known as your IP’s geolocation.

IP address locations are not the most accurate, but they do reveal in which city you appear to be located, and who your internet service provider is.

How to Find Your IP Address

Checking your IP address is simple. Use our tool (at the top of this page) from any web browser and it will display your IP address (IPv4 and/or IPv6), geolocation, and host information.

You can also use a script to check your IP address automatically. If that’s what you want to do, use our URL, instead.

If you want to look up the details of another IP address (not necessarily yours), then use our IP Address Lookup tool.

Below are step-by-step instructions on how to manually find your public IP address on popular devices and operating systems:

Windows 10 & 11

Here’s how to check your IP address on Windows 10 and 11 devices:

  1. Open the “Start” menu, then navigate to “Settings”, “Network & Internet”, and “Wi-Fi”.
  2. Connect to a WiFi network, then click on the network you’re connected to.
  3. Scroll down to “Properties.”
  4. Your IP address and DNS server address will be listed here.


Here’s how to find your IP address on macOS devices:

  1. Open “System Settings”, then “Network”.
  2. Click on the “Wi-Fi” button.
  3. Connect to a WiFi network, then select “Details” on the right-hand side.
  4. Your IP address will be listed here.

iPhone & Android

Here’s how to find your IP address on an iPhone:

  1. Open “Settings” and tap on “WiFi”.
  2. Connect to a WiFi network, or tap on the network you’re connected to.
  3. Your IPv4 and IPv6 addresses will be listed here.

Here’s how to find your IP address on an Android phone:

  1. Open “Settings” and click “Connections”.
  2. Tap on the WiFi network you’re connected to.
  3. Tap on the cog symbol next to your current network.
  4. Your public IP address will be listed here.

Amazon Fire TV Stick

Here’s how to find your IP address on an Amazon Fire TV Stick:

  1. Navigate to the “Settings” menu and select “OK”.
  2. Click on “My Fire TV”, then “About”.
  3. Select the “Network” button.
  4. You’ll find your IP address listed on the right-hand side.

IPv4 vs IPv6 IP Addresses

There are two types of IP address protocols in use around the world: IPv4 (IP4) and IPv6 (IP6).

IPv4 (Internet Protocol version 4) was introduced in 1981, way before the huge growth of internet-connected devices. It uses a 32-bit address structure, which supports approximately 4.3 billion IP addresses.

Each IPv4 address is unique and usually looks like this: . The IP address is separated into four fields of digits, with each field representing a ‘byte.’

IPv4 is still the most-used Internet Protocol (78-80% household penetration), however IP4 addresses are running out quickly. There just aren’t enough IPv4 addresses for every internet user.

IPv6 (Internet Protocol version 6) was first introduced in 1995 to solve the supply problem of IPv4 addresses.

Differently to IPv4, IPv6 uses 128-bit addresses, which gives IPv6 a capacity of up to 340 undecillion IP addresses!

Here is an example of what an IPv6 address looks like:

IPv6 addresses aren’t as widespread as IPv4, but if your ISP has assigned you one then you should experience faster, safer and more reliable internet data transfers.

According to a Google study, global IPv6 adoption currently sits at over 40%. In the United States, IPv6 penetration is closer to 50%.

Be aware that a device using an IPv4 address can’t communicate with another device (or server) using IPv6.

If you’re connected to an IPv6-enabled network, and you use a VPN that does not support IPv6, your personal IPv6 address may be exposed.

Why Is My IPv4 & IPv6 Information Different?

If you’re connected to a VPN service while using our IP checker tool, you may see different details between your IPv4 address and your IPv6 address.

This is most likely because your VPN is not tunneling IPv6 correctly. This means that your real IPv6 address, and all the data associated with it, is still publicly exposed.

There are two ways to fix IPv6 address leaks using your VPN:

  1. Check if your VPN has IPv6 leak protection within the app’s settings. If it does, make sure it’s enabled.
  2. See if your VPN can disable or block IPv6. This is the next best option – your VPN will simply disable your IPv6 connection to prevent leaks, rather than attempt to tunnel it.

If you cannot find either of these options, your VPN cannot fix the problem.

In this case, you can attempt to fix the issue within your device’s network settings by manually disabling IPv6.

We explain how to disable IPv6 on multiple platforms in our guide to fixing IP address leaks.

If you have both an IPv4 and an IPv6 address, the latter will likely be your device’s preferred protocol.

In this scenario, you can fix the leak by blocking all IPv6 traffic. Don’t worry, your internet connection will still work since your device will exclusively use IPv4.

Public vs Private IP Addresses

There are two more types of IP addresses: public and private.

Your public IP address is the IP address that’s visible to other devices you connect to on the internet. It’s also known as the ‘external’ IP address.

Your private IP address is the IP address assigned within your internal network, for example at home or at your office.

When you visit an external website, or open up a mobile application, only your public IP address is visible.

For instance, when you visit without a VPN, we can see your public IP address and we’ll display it in our tool (don’t worry, we don’t store IP addresses).

Typically, if someone talks about an “IP Address” they are referring to their public IP address, not their private one.

For devices connected to a home or office router, the router will assign each device a private IP address. This lets the router distinguish internet traffic going to and from each device.

Private IP Ranges

Private IP addresses look different to public IP addresses, and fall into these three ranges:

  • –
  • –
  • –

To see your private IP addresses, you’ll have to log into your router using the details provided by your router vendor or supplier. Or, look at the network settings on your device.

Static vs Dynamic IP Addresses

When your ISP assigns you a public IP address, you’ll either get a static or a dynamic IP address.

A static public IP address always remains the same. That’s unless you switch ISP, or you relocate. This makes connecting remotely to your computer or other home equipment easier, because your IP address never changes.

However, static IP addresses pose some security risks. Since the IP address never changes, it’s easier for hackers to locate the relevant DNS server. Use one of our other bespoke tools to check your DNS server.

For residential connections, most ISPs assign dynamic public IP addresses. This means your IP address will change over time – typically when your router reconnects to the ISP after a reboot or network outage.

If you’re using a VPN service, you’ll likely be assigned a dynamic VPN IP address. Having said that, some VPN services let you purchase a static VPN IP address for an additional fee.

Dynamic Public IP Addresses

Dynamic IP addresses are assigned by Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) servers and change over time. Your IP address can change a few times a year, or several times a month.

ISPs are increasingly assigning dynamic IP addresses because they cost less to maintain. They can be frequently re-used and re-assigned to devices connecting to the internet.

In practice, having a dynamic IP address doesn’t change the way you use the internet. But, it can make accessing computers, equipment or web resources remotely more difficult.

For instance, to connect to your PC or Webcam remotely, you need to know your IP address. That can become a problem if your IP address changes regularly.

What Can Someone Do with My IP Address?

Your IP address reveals certain information about you. For example, where you’re located (approximately) and what internet-connected devices you use.

Furthermore, your ISP or mobile carrier can see what websites you visit through your public IP address.

Below is a short list of actions companies and individuals can take once they know your IP address:

  • Determine your approximate location. Your IP address reveals your country, city, and sometimes your ZIP code.
  • Block your IP address and restrict access to web services.
  • Carry out a Denial of Service (DoS) attack. This involves sending huge amounts of traffic to your IP address server, causing the server to crash. When this happens, your internet connection drops.
  • Scan for open ports. Hackers can scan open ports to identify your devices’ vulnerabilities to online attacks.
  • Doxing. By obtaining your IP address, someone can dox you. This means uncovering your real identity or personal information and releasing it to the public.
  • Targeted advertising based on IP address. Businesses can display online ads only targeting specific IP addresses.

How to Hide Your IP Address

As we detailed above, there are risks associated with individuals and companies knowing your IP address.

We therefore believe it’s very important to hide your IP address. The easiest ways to do this are to use a web proxy, or a VPN service.

Hiding Your IP address with a Web Proxy

A web proxy (usually available via a website, or web application) lets you route internet traffic from applications on your device to a proxy server, and then on to your web destination.

Web proxies are typically set up on an application-by-application basis, e.g. via a web browser.

When you connect to a proxy server, your IP address changes to one assigned by the server. This masks your true IP address while using a proxied application, and the websites you visit only see the proxy’s IP address.

Hiding Your IP Address with a VPN

A VPN is a better software version of a web proxy, which you can install and use on most devices.

Like a proxy, VPNs divert your internet traffic through a private server, which assigns you a different IP address.

Unlike proxies, secure VPNs use sophisticated connection protocols (e.g. OpenVPN and WireGuard), and encryption (e.g. AES 256-bit), to further secure your internet data transfers.

High-quality VPN services route all your internet traffic through a secure VPN server. They anonymize your web activity, regardless of which application you’re using.

If you’re connected to a VPN, use our IP and DNS leak test tool to verify your IP and DNS credentials are not being exposed.

Learn More About Your IP Address

See below more guides we’ve published to help you learn more about IP addresses:

  • What Can Someone Do with Your IP Address?
  • Static vs Dynamic VPN IP Addresses Explained
  • How to Hide Your IP Address
  • What Is My DNS Server?
  • IP, WebRTC, and DNS Leak Testing Tool
  • Who Is My ISP?

How to find your IP address whenever you need it

You don’t have to memorize your IP address, but it’s useful to know where to find it.

By Sandra Gutierrez G. | Published May 13, 2023 11:19 AM EDT

Hands on laptop typing.

There are several ways to get to your device’s IP address. Burst / Unsplash

Knowing how to find your IP address is a useful skill, even if you don’t know exactly what an IP address is or what it’s for. Whether you want to set up a new 3D printer or don’t want to sound ignorant while on the phone with your internet service provider, there are a couple of ways to easily get this information.

Get to know these methods in case you ever need them, and while you’re at it, maybe learn what this string of numbers is and why it’s important.

How to find your IP address on any device

Don’t get intimidated by your IP address. This set of digits should be readily available on your device, and if you can’t find it, you can always just Google it.

On macOS

  • Click on the WiFi icon in the top right area of the navigation bar.
  • On the emerging menu, choose Wi-Fi Settings.
  • At the top of the menu, you’ll see the network your device is connected to. Click the Details button next to it.
  • A window will pop up showing the IP address of your device and your router.

On iOS and iPadOS

  • Open Settings and tap Wi-Fi.
  • Find the network you’re connected to—it’ll be the first on the list and have a blue checkmark beside it.
  • Tap the information button on the right (a blue “i” inside a circle).
  • You’ll find your IP address under IPV4 address.

On Windows 11

  • Open the Start menu.
  • Go to Settings, then Network & internet.
  • Open the Wi-Fi settings and open the properties of the network your device is connected to—it should be the second item on the list.
  • Scroll down to find your IPv4 and IPv6 addresses.

There’s a reason why Windows computers and some other devices have two IP addresses. Internet protocol version 4, also known as IPv4, is the original system invented back in 1980 to identify computers and other devices. But IPv4 only has 32 bits, which means there are only so many addresses available and not nearly enough for the hyperconnected future we live in today. Enter IPv6—the 64-bit solution that provides many more addresses to make space for all the new devices hitting the market every day. The problem is that the rollout of this 1998 protocol took a long time, and some older servers and programs are not compatible with it. This is why some devices use a workaround and have two IP addresses to bridge that gap and avoid any service interruptions.

On Android

As always, keep in mind that Android varies depending on the make and model of your device, so the names on these instructions could be slightly different. This is what you’ll find on a Pixel phone:

  • Swipe one finger down from the top of the screen and long press on the Internet tile to open the internet settings.
  • Tap the cog icon next to the network you’re connected to.
  • Scroll down and you’ll find your IP address under Network details.

If that seems a little confusing, you can always unlock your device and ask the Google Assistant: “Hey, Google, what’s my IP address?” The platform will instantly open the About phone menu, where you’ll find your IP address under Device identifiers.

Use Google

You can always ask Google for your IP address but note that the engine will reveal your public address, not your private one. From any browser, type “What’s my IP address” into the big G’s search bar and the engine will show it to you at the very top of the results page.

What an IP address is and why should you care about it

You can easily go through life without knowing the importance of IP addresses, but in the highly connected society we live in today, it’s better to at least have a notion of what they are.

In general, an IP address is a unique series of numbers that identifies a device with the ability to connect to the internet. Every gadget has a private or internal IP address assigned by its manufacturer. If the internet were a town, this would be your home address. When you watch a movie on a streaming service, your device sends a request to whatever platform you’re using, which in turn knows where to send the reply (i.e. the movie) thanks to your IP address. This specific piece of data is very useful, which makes it very valuable. Treat it as your social security number and don’t disclose it.

But your router also has an IP address—it’s assigned by your internet service provider and is known as an external or public IP address. This one’s important because it provides certain details about your location, such as the city you live in and your ZIP code. This information may help hackers get to your private IP address, which they can use for all sorts of nefarious purposes, ranging from sending you spam and intercepting your information, to framing you for crimes. If you’re worried about this, you may want to consider getting a VPN or using one built into your device.

Sandra Gutierrez is the Associate DIY editor at Popular Science. She makes a living by turning those “Wait, I can make that!” moments she has while browsing the internet into fully-fledged stories—and she loves that. Contact the author here.