If you are trying to access geo-restricted or blocked sites, the first thing you might find is sites that offer fake IP addresses or free proxies to use. In some cases, these tools can help you with your tasks, but in exchange you will put your personal data at risk. In this article, we will discuss the risks of fake IP addresses and reasons why not use free proxies.
What Does Your IP Address Say About You?
Every computer in the network has a special number linked to it called an IP address. Without this address, you won’t be able to access any web page or site. Today, IP addresses in most cases are assigned by the provider.
All the concerns with the IP are related to the fact that it carries information about your current location. The IP address itself can’t reveal your exact location, because it is connected to a pool of the same IPs from your area. This way the IP itself can show only your inexact location like city or district.
For example, if you send an email from your PC at your house, someone who receives it can see only the city which it was sent from. In this case, most of your sensitive information won’t be revealed. However, the main threat lurks in case of associating your online activity with an IP. If someone does this, he will be able to stalk most of the actions of a certain computer with these IPs.
Can Your IP Address be Traced?
In most cases, IP addresses come from one large point of distribution for these addresses. Providers usually assign your IP randomly, so it is not an easy task to track you down and find your location accurately enough. Anyone who wants to accomplish this needs to use a lot of your personal information at the same time.
However, websites can automatically extract basic information about a PC or phone and its location. That can help if you, for example, live in France and want all the sites to be in French by default. However, this option also brings a threat to your online privacy. Not every site or page will be following the data regulations and can mistreat your data.
More than this, if some shady sites will find out your real IP, cyber criminals can try to get access to your PC. Hackers with enough skill can try to brute-force ports on routers to get almost direct access to your system. This way, any information can be stolen, and your PC infected with a virus.
One more threat of this kind can come from your provider. Hackers, knowing your real IP, can try spoofing to impersonate you in the eyes of the provider to see your personal information. That can lead to stealing your social media accounts. Keeping all those threats in mind, you can consider using datacenter proxies, for hiding your IP and staying private online.
The Problem of Free Proxies and Fake IPs
At first sight, proxies to use for free can be a good choice for handling some easy and fast tasks. You get all needed functionality and don’t bother yourself with payment or even registration in some cases. But, in the end, convenience and functions will be paid for by your personal data.
You still might ask – “Why not use fake IP addresses or free proxies?”. The answer is pretty simple, because the main thing services like this are trying to do is stealing and selling your data. Another question is – “How to use free proxies and stay secured?”. In this case you need to remember, that every use of a proxy or fake IP option for free is practically a gambling in hope that your information won’t be used or stolen.
For example, free proxies can steal your cookies and all information that is related to them. When a proxy makes a connection between you and a website, owners of free proxies can easily intercept cookies and other important data. With data like this in hand, nothing can stop criminals from logging in to your accounts and impersonate you online.
Fake IP Address Generators
Fake IP services can also claim to provide you with anonymity online. But, basically, there is no such thing as a fake IP and all existing IPs are real. The only option that can be considered fake is unused IP addresses. You can make unused IPs with IP generators, but they will only represent numbers that are not tied to any computer.
However, these IPs are not capable of working with any requests. IPs like this are only useful for testing scripts and work of code. In the end, proxy servers will change your real IP to a new one anyway.
Can All Proxy Servers Change Your IP?
Many fishy proxy or fake IP services will claim that they can provide all functionality without changing your IP. Claims of this kind almost certainly will be a lie, because a proxy is supposed to change your IP due to the logic of the processes.
The proxy servers are used as the gate through which you can access the Internet. So, any proxy connection will redirect your requests to the proxy server address and only after this traffic with the new IP will be sent to the Internet.
Is it Legal to Track IP Addresses?
In some cases tracking of an IP can be legal. If you have a needed permission and not try to break any GDPR rules in the process, IP tracking will be legal. In the end, it all comes to what you will do with IP and collected information after. You can also hide your real IP with anonymizing tools like VPN or private proxy. That practice is also legal and used in order to avoid even legalized attempts of IP tracking.
The main threats in IP tracking cases come from spoofing, IP grabbing and phishing. Your IP may not be the most sensitive information, but it is still personal data and at the disposal of a criminal can do enough harm. This is why establishing proper privacy on the Internet becomes a more popular thing.
Which is Better: Proxy or VPN
Both instruments are called on to solve the same task of hiding your IP, but use different approaches. VPN can be a good choice for enhancement of your security on the Internet. This can be a good tool if you are looking only for hiding your IP and encrypting traffic.
However, VPN services in most cases use a set of datacenter IPs that can be used by a number of users at the same time. This way, your provider or cyber criminals can understand that your connection is going through the VPN. In some countries, providers can block your connection if they know that it’s going through the VPN.
A proxy, in its turn, can not only increase your online safety, but also serve as an instrument for lots of different business scenarios. In case of anonymity, proxy can be a great solution for hiding your real IP, bypassing restrictions and accessing online content. For example, you can use static residential proxies and get easy access to all the needed functions.
But a proxy can also be useful for lots of different specific tasks like web scraping or gathering big data volumes. Companies and organizations resort to the help of proxies almost every day to solve business tasks faster and more efficiently. In this perspective, you can consider using a set of datacenter rotating proxies for handling resourceful and power consumption missions.
Now, with all that knowledge, you can see how significant it is to always track your privacy on the Internet. Free proxies or fake IP in most cases tend to follow your actions and steal your personal information. Use of services like this is basically connected to creating a point for cyber criminals to attack your PC or steal information from it.
Trusted services always can ensure you with all needed guarantees and help all across the way. Sensitive data is not a thing that can be passed to anyone, so when selecting a service for yourself, it is always good to be especially picky.
Frequently Asked Questions
Please read our Documentation if you have questions that are not listed below.
What threats do free proxies and fake IP carry?
Free proxies or fake IP addresses look like good tools from afar. But, if you look close enough, it is clear that services of this kind are in most cases targeting at stealing or selling your personal information. Each time, you can't be sure that your connection is not tracked and your data won't be seen.
What proxy is best to hide your real IP address?
Most types of the proxies will handle this task. But, for more comfortable web surfing, you can try to use residential proxies. This way your real IP will be hidden and you will stay private online.
Can I be tracked by my IP?
IP address carries information about your approximate location, up to a district at best. However, if criminals will collect enough of your personal information and compare it to an IP address, it is possible to track you pretty accurately.
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