Hide my ip online

Seven Ways to Hide My IP Address

All three work differently. Users can compare the three for their trade-offs regarding security, cost, and privacy.

How to Hide My IP Address for Free in 2023: VPNs, Proxies & More

If you’re wondering how to hide your IP address for free, this article explains seven free methods for IP address hiding. The best method is to use a trustworthy free VPN, as it provides privacy and security while it hides your IP address. However, there are also other methods you can use.

Key Takeaways: Hide My IP Address For Free

  • There are various methods to hide your IP address for free, but using a trustworthy VPN is the most secure and best option to protect your privacy.
  • Other methods can help hide your original IP but fail to secure your connection using encryption protocols.
  • If you’re looking for free VPN options, consider Proton VPN, Windscribe and TunnelBear. Otherwise, if you’re open to investing in online privacy, ExpressVPN is an excellent VPN service.

Government censorship, geoblocking and increased cybercrime are key reasons for people to hide their IP addresses. If you’re wondering, “how can I hide my IP address for free,” we can help.

In this article, we’ll share seven methods to hide your IP address (also called IP masking) for free, along with a few things you should know beforehand. We’ll also explain how you can verify if your IP address is truly hidden by a different IP address.

The best method to hide your real IP address for free is to use a trustworthy free VPN (virtual private network) service, such as Proton VPN. However, you can get even better performance with a premium VPN, like ExpressVPN.

What Should I Know Before I Hide My IP Address for Free?

While you can browse anonymously when you hide your actual IP address, there are things you should watch out for. Here’s what you should know before you hide your real IP address.

  • Free tools can be dangerous: Many free VPNs or proxies are created by bad actors, and your device might even become vulnerable to malware attacks. It’s critical to install an antivirus solution to protect your device when using a free tool and to ensure the tool you choose is reputable.
  • Changing your IP doesn’t secure your network: Even when it changes your IP address, a free tool may or may not encrypt your connection. Without encryption, hackers, the government and your internet service provider (ISP) can intercept your internet connection.
  • Some free tools can be less effective: Using a proxy might not help you access geoblocked websites. This is also true for some free VPN services. If you’re trying to hide your IP address to access geoblocked content, this can be a problem. You can address this problem by selecting the right VPN tool, though.
  • Too technical: If you don’t consider yourself tech-savvy, using a NAT firewall can sound intimidating. Our guide will ensure you can implement this method, but it can be a hassle for those who aren’t comfortable with networking jargon. If you aren’t comfortable tinkering with your router settings, it’s best to use a reliable, free VPN.

Understanding these facts is critical to ensuring you maintain your device’s security and privacy while using one of the methods below to acquire a new IP address.

Why Should I Hide My IP Address?

You might want to hide your current IP address for a number of purposes. Here are the most common reasons users may want to hide their original IP address.

  • Privacy: Hiding your IP address helps mask online actions from who is doing it. The government, your ISP, the websites you visit and the search engines you use might track your online activity and location using your IP address. Changing your IP address ensures that data tracking isn’t connected to your normal IP address.
  • Access blocked content: Many websites restrict content based on your geographical location. For example, if you’re in the U.K., you’ll see different content on Netflix than someone who is in Japan. Many websites block access altogether based on where you’re located.
  • Bypass a local firewall: The network at your school or workplace might have IP-based restrictions. In some cases, you can circumvent these by hiding your IP address. However, firewalls have become a lot more sophisticated. Your best bet for avoiding them is to use one of the best VPN services.

How Can I Tell if My IP Address Is Truly Hidden?

You can tell if your IP address is truly hidden with a simple Google search. Just Google “what’s my IP address?” and you’ll see your public IP address.

Do this before and after you hide your IP. If the IP has changed, your IP address is hidden. If you see the same IP address, then the VPN or proxy is failing to hide your IP address. There are other ways to check if you have a different public IP address, such as using the “ipconfig” command on Windows.

Is It Legal to Hide My IP Address?

Yes, hiding your IP address is legal, except in a few censorship-heavy countries like China and the United Arab Emirates. Note that while hiding your IP address is perfectly legal in most countries, illegal activities like downloading pirated content remain illegal, even while connected to a VPN.

7 Ways to Hide Your IP Address for Free

You can hide your IP address for free using various methods. Below, we outline the best ones in detail.

1. Use a Free VPN

A trustworthy free VPN is your best bet when trying to hide your IP address for free. Some commercial VPN providers offer a free plan — called a “freemium” plan — that can help you hide your IP address by assigning you one of their shared IP addresses on their VPN servers.

A VPN server has a pool of shared IP addresses, and when you connect, you get assigned one at random. Some VPN providers also offer private IP address options, so you don’t have to share the IP with other VPN users.

However, selecting just any free VPN provider can compromise your privacy, and in some cases, infect your device with malware. We’ve created a list of the worst free VPNs — make you sure to stay away from them.

We also have a list of the best free VPNs, and we’ve provided some recommendations further down, including Proton VPN, Windscribe and TunnelBear. Select one of these VPN providers and you should be fine.

The exact process of connecting to a VPN server for changing your IP address differs slightly among VPN apps, but it’s fundamentally the same — install the VPN app, launch it and connect to a server to initiate the VPN connection. We’ll show you exactly how in the step-by-step instructions below.

Step-By-Step Guide: How to Hide Your IP Address With a Free VPN

Securing your connection with a VPN is easy. Proton VPN has an excellent free plan that’s secure and offers unlimited data. Here’s how to use it to hide your IP address for free.

    Sign Up for a Free VPN and Install the App

Sign up for a free VPN, such as Proton VPN. Then, download and install the VPN app on your device.

Launch the app, log in to your account and connect to a VPN server. Free users on Proton VPN can connect to a server in the U.S., Netherlands and Japan. After connecting, your real IP address will be hidden. When you access a website, it will see the new IP address assigned by the VPN instead of your real IP address.

2. Use a Proxy Server

A proxy server works similarly to a VPN. Your traffic is routed via an intermediary proxy server, which helps you acquire that server’s IP address. In a way, VPNs are also a type of proxy. However, there are various differences between a proxy and a VPN.

For example, proxies also don’t encrypt your connection like VPNs do, so even though your real IP address will be hidden, the data you transmit over your network will remain vulnerable to interception or inspection.

In fact, even your real IP address is at risk when using a proxy because your website requests will be sent to a third-party DNS server. This server will be able to register your real IP address, and you’ll have to trust that it won’t store that information. Nevertheless, if you want to use a proxy server, here’s how you can do it.

Go to a free proxy service, such as the HideMyAss free proxy. Enter the website you want to access. If you have the option, select the server location as per your preference. Click the “agree & connect” button.

3. Use Tor: The Onion Routing Project

Tor (The Onion Routing project) helps you access .onion websites. The Tor network is a decentralized network of encrypted access points that conceal your IP address. These access points are called “nodes.”

The website you’re trying to access can only see the exit node’s (or the last node’s) IP address. The sequence of nodes changes every time, making your activity untraceable. However, Tor is generally used to access the deep web. It’s not the best option for streaming, browsing or torrenting.

If you’d still like to use Tor, you’ll need to download the Tor Browser. Once the browser is installed, you can use it like any other browser. None of the websites you visit will be able to see your original IP address as long as you use the Tor Browser.

4. Reset Your Router

Often, restarting unplugging and plugging your router back in can change your IP address. However, this method is very hit-or-miss. The probability of success with this method depends on how long you keep the router or modem unplugged.

If you want to take a more drastic step, you can reset your router. There’s typically a reset button at the back of the router. Press and hold down this button to reset the router. When the router reboots after the reset, you’ll have a new IP address.

5. Request an IP Change

Internet service providers (ISPs) frequently change your IP address — these are called dynamic IP addresses. However, if you want to change your IP address faster, you can ask the ISP to change it.

When you call your ISP, make sure you have your current IP address and account information handy. You can also request a static IP address — these don’t change and cost extra.

6. Connect to a Different Network

Each time you connect to a new internet network, your device is assigned a fresh IP address, except in cases where you’re using a static IP address. If your IP has been blocklisted or otherwise compromised, just connect to another network.

Using public WiFi isn’t the safest option unless you’re using a VPN connection, so avoid using those to change your network’s IP address. You can connect to another network at your home or office, or use your mobile phone as a hotspot.

7. Use a NAT Firewall

Wireless connections use a NAT (network address translation) firewall. NAT firewalls allow all devices connected to a network to use the same public IP address but a different private IP address per device. The NAT firewall conceals your private IP addresses, but your public IP address is still visible.

If you want to check if NAT is turned on, you’ll need to browse around a little in your router’s firmware, since all routers have different interfaces. Here’s a general guide on how to enable the NAT firewall.

Type or into your browser’s address bar and press the “enter” key. This will help you access the router’s firmware. Log in using the credentials provided by the router manufacturer. Look in relevant sections like WAN settings to search for the NAT firewall. Enable the option, save and exit the router firmware.

The 3 Best Free VPNs for Hiding Your IP Address

Free VPN providers are your best bet for hiding your IP address at no cost. However, they do have limitations, including capped monthly data and limited server locations. If you find you need a premium VPN, look at our best VPN list — ExpressVPN is the best VPN on the market and comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee that you can use as a free trial.

Otherwise, if you’re OK with the limitations, here are the best VPNs that offer a trustworthy free plan.

1. Proton VPN

  • DNS leak protection
  • Unlimited free data
  • Fast servers
  • Free plan in only 3 countries

Proton VPN is the best free VPN because it’s fast, secure, offers unlimited data and has a strict no-logs policy. It also unblocks most geoblocked websites and streaming platforms, including Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.

All DNS requests made through your device after you’ve connected to a Proton VPN server are resolved by Proton VPN’s private DNS servers. No third party can access your DNS requests, rendering your online activity anonymous. Read more about Proton VPN in our comprehensive Proton VPN review.

Seven Ways to Hide My IP Address

It’s difficult to be anonymous on the Internet. Users surfing the web have much of their traffic monitored and recorded thanks to their IP address, which is a unique identifier assigned to each device online. However, hiding your IP can help give you back your anonymity, security, and privacy online. In this article, we’ll explain how to hide your IP address – and how to do it for free.

Why hide my IP address?

While hiding your IP address isn’t a necessity, there are a number of legitimate reasons why you may want to change your IP address.

  • Security. You may be using an unsecured connection and don’t want to risk having your private information exposed.
  • Privacy. Quite simply, you may not want your activity or browsing habits tracked – whether it be by someone else on the same network, by advertisers and companies, or by the government.
  • Accessibility. If you’re visiting a school or working for a company that restricts or filters web content for users on the WiFi, hiding your IP address can help evade these annoying restrictions. Furthermore, you may want to access content that is available only to people in certain areas or countries.

All of these reasons have nothing to do with illegal activity and everything to do with protecting yourself and your online activity.

Use a private browser, like Tor, to hide your IP address.

How to hide my IP address

There’s no one perfect way to hide your IP address. However, users who want to do so have several options. The three best ways to change your IP address are by:

  • using a VPN
  • using a proxy server
  • contacting your Internet service provider

All three work differently. Users can compare the three for their trade-offs regarding security, cost, and privacy.

Use a VPN

The best way to hide your real IP address is using a virtual private network, or VPN. It works as a middleman between your network and your device and helps to disguise your IP address. It encrypts your connection using secure tunneling techniques, protecting all online data transfers as they go between your device and your end destination. Information goes from your device to your VPN provider’s server, and then from your provider’s server to the end destination. Though it doesn’t give you a permanent new IP address, hiding your IP with this method essentially offers the same benefits.

VPNs securely hide your IP address because they substitute your actual IP address with a “virtual” one provided by the VPN. When you connect to the Internet, whether through a browser or an app, nobody can see your IP address besides your VPN provider. Though they aren’t impossible to detect, VPNs are hard to detect, meaning it’s likely nobody online will know that you’re hiding your IP.

Because a VPN server can’t shield your IP address from the provider, it’s crucial that you choose a trusted VPN service that doesn’t log your activities. Choosing a low-quality VPN service defeats the entire purpose of a VPN. This is also why free VPN services are unreliable and shouldn’t be trusted. Though VPNs worth using aren’t free, they offer a myriad of benefits to the user, including hiding their IP.

Use a proxy server

A proxy server is kind of like a VPN: it can mask your IP address and change the location of your IP address. However, proxies aren’t as robust as VPNs when it comes to hiding your IP address. They hide your IP address by substituting it with a different IP address before your web traffic gets to its destination. Proxies are essentially gateways between a client and the rest of the Internet.

Proxies provide privacy and a degree of anonymity, though many proxy servers are detectable. They don’t encrypt your traffic or hide your IP as it travels to the server, but they do mask your IP from the rest of the Internet. If you have a proxy and want to see if it can be detected, use a proxy check tool to analyze your connection.

Contact your ISP

Another option for hiding your IP address is contacting your Internet service provider (ISP) and requesting a new IP. This ensures that any traffic or activity connected to your previous IP is not linked to your new IP. However, should you continue the same online habits and maintain the same online footprint, then it’s likely websites will be able to pick up on the fact that you are still the same user.

To change your IP through your ISP, contact them with your account information and current IP address. Many ISPs use dynamic IP address systems, which results in changing IP addresses periodically. However, if you want to request a static IP address – one that stays the same unless manually changed – you will likely have to pay.

How to hide my IP online for free

Though a paid VPN or proxy service is the best and most secure way to hide your IP, sometimes those just don’t fit in a budget. If you want to hide your IP address but can’t buy a proxy or VPN, try hiding your IP for free by:

  • using Tor or similar anonymous browsers
  • connecting to a different network
  • using public WiFi
  • unplugging your modem

Learn more about each method below if you want to hide your IP address for free.

Use Tor or similar browsers

Tor is a free-to-use network that disguises your identity online through three layers of encryption. The onion router project was originally established to make sure users had complete anonymity online, and Tor attempts to do that by preventing ad tracking and making sure that users don’t leave any online fingerprints behind when using their Tor browser. As a volunteer project, it’s completely free of charge for all users, and it hides your IP by bouncing your connection off of hundreds of relay servers located across the network. It’s essentially a website that hides your IP, as it doesn’t store your data and allows you to browse freely.

However, with Tor, you compromise speed for privacy. Tor’s multiple layers of encryption cause connection delays. This may be worth it for some to hide their IP for free, but keep Tor’s speed in mind when considering your options.

Connect to a different network

Though it sounds simple, connecting to a different network changes your external, or public, IP address. Subsequently, it also changes your device’s internal, or private, IP, since that is assigned by a network. If you want to hide your IP address – the IP your device has when surfing at home or at work – try connecting to a different network.

Use public WiFi

Similarly, if you want to change your IP address, using public WiFi networks will assign your device a different IP since it’s a new network. However, be wary; using free or public WiFi unprotected can be risky, as it opens you up to cybercrime threats and information theft across the network. If you do use free WiFi, ensure you do it safely.

Unplug your modem

Perhaps the simplest way to get a new IP address and hide your online identity is by unplugging your modem. When you lose your connection to your ISP – which happens when you unplug your modem – your IP could be reassigned. When you reconnect, if your previous IP has been reassigned, you will be assigned a new IP address.

This method doesn’t always work, but the longer you leave your modem unplugged, the more likely it is that you’ll succeed. Unplug your modem for fifteen minutes at minimum.

Choosing the best method to hide an IP

Again, there’s not one perfect way to hide your IP address. The method that you choose will depend on your priorities. Price, security, speed, permanence, and reliability are all factors to consider.

If it’s within your budget, however, the best way to hide your IP address is with a VPN. It’s the most reliable and secure, and generally, using a VPN doesn’t noticeably impact your device’s speed or performance. However, free VPNs and free proxies are unsafe; if you’re debating getting a free VPN, we recommend using one of the other free methods to hide your IP instead.

Frequently asked questions

How can I hide my IP address online?

The three best ways to hide your IP address are to:

  • use a VPN
  • use a proxy server
  • contact your Internet service provider

All three work differently. Users can compare the three for their trade-offs regarding security, cost, and privacy.

What is my IP?

You can visit the site homepage to find my public IP, both IPv4 and IPv6 if detected.

Is it illegal to hide my IP address?

No, it’s not illegal to hide your IP address. As long as you aren’t doing anything illegal online, hiding your IP is completely fine. Many users hide their IPs for increased privacy, better security, or greater anonymity.

Use secure browsers to hide your IP address.

Is there a browser that hides IP addresses?

There are numerous privacy browsers out there that offer privacy protections such as blocking cookies, web activity, and IP addresses. Privacy browsers that mask your IP address include Avast, Opera, and Epic Privacy Browser.

How do I hide my IP completely?

The most successful way to completely to hide your IP is via a VPN. Virtual private networks provide consistent concealment when you surf the web, without the hassle of contacting your ISP or having to manually change your IP each time you go online.

Can I hide my IP address without a VPN?

There are many ways to hide your IP even without a VPN. Try a proxy, the Tor browser, or unplugging your modem.

Can a hidden IP address be traced?

No, a hidden IP address cannot be traced. Using a secure method, like a VPN or proxy, keeps your IP and Internet traffic from being tracked or traced by any other third party.

However, keep in mind that your online activity is not completely gone – it’s just under a different IP address. If you continue to visit the same websites, do the same tasks, and otherwise act the same online, your digital footprint will stay the same. It’s possible for a website or browser to realize that you are the same user this way, though they still can’t trace your hidden IP.

  • Do Not Sell My Personal Information
  • Change Consent