5 Best IP-Hider Apps for Windows
Geolocation tracking services are becoming an increasing worry for consumers, and there’s a good reason for that. While cybercriminals can use your IP address to get into your network, there’s just as much risk from third-party services like social media platforms that could potentially sell your personal information and government surveillance.
More mundane but equally practical is the need to get around regional restrictions for content streaming apps like Netflix and Spotify. Whatever your reason for wanting to block your IP address, there are plenty of options available to you. Here are five of the best choices on the market today.
While virtual private network (VPN) services have been the talk of the town in terms of internet privacy, proxy tools like Privoxy can be a valuable alternative. Just keep in mind that they typically only block your browser and torrent history rather than provide you with the more complex tunneling services you’ll find in VPN.
That said, Privoxy is one of the most feature-rich proxy platforms you’ll find. They work easily with most modern browsers, so there’s no need to run through multiple configurations to make it compatible with the software you use to surf the net, and it fully supports IPv6.
But users should bear in mind that Privoxy is made for power users. There’s a whole wealth of features available, but they can quickly become overwhelming, and fully making use of the options available to you requires a more technical knowledge of what you’re doing.
If you’re willing to invest in the learning curve, Privoxy can provide you with the ability to set security settings on a page-by-page or site-by-site basis, chain it together with other proxies, and de-animate GIFs.
Surfshark is one of the more versatile VPN services on the market. There are two major elements you should look at when choosing a VPN service. The speed of your VPN service is a practical concern since a slower service could lead to incredibly slow download speeds and stuttering when you’re trying to stream content.
When you use Surfshark, you’ll be getting some of the most reliable services you can find in the VPN market. Surfshark’s security policy is also top notch, and they have systems in place to help you when the worst happens.
One thing to look at with a VPN service is whether or not they log your data. While many VPN services promise you a higher level of security, some of them keep logs of your activities. Users should be concerned about this data being sold to third parties, hacked by hackers, or released to authorities.
Since Surfshark doesn’t save any of this information in the first place, you don’t have to worry about them intentionally or unintentionally releasing it. They’ve also incorporated a kill switch into their system that disables internet connection if the VPN connection drops, so you know there’ll be no accidental exposure.
Additionally, security measures include a utility that blocks ads and trackers and an impressive system of encrypting your data. You can download it here: https://surfshark.com/download/windows
3. Hide My Ass
What’s especially great about this proxy service is how easy it is to get running. There’s no need to download extensions or additional software, so it’s ideal for sessions where you want privacy on a machine but you’re not looking to deal with the installation of a dedicated client. Best of all, it’s free to use.
The proxy options are a bit limited though. Users can only connect to proxies in the United States, the United Kingdom, or the Netherlands, so you’re out of luck if you’re trying to connect to specific content providers in specific regions. While advertising helps keep Hide My Ass free, it’s generally unobtrusive and targeted toward products from the same developer.
You don’t need to worry about them selling your data to a third party. But you should keep in mind that they do log your data for up to 30 days, a potential worry for those who are exceedingly conscious about their digital footprint.
4. CyberGhost VPN
CyberGhost VPN is a strong service; and while it’s free to use, users who don’t buy into a subscription plan can expect to see their traffic deprioritized. The free version is perfectly competent and should meet the needs of casual users, but those who buy into the subscription service get access to a much more robust feature set and more agile performance.
Casual users should be able to get by with the free version of CyberGhost, but it can be somewhat unreliable. Since there’s limited space on their virtual servers, paid users get first dibs.
That means you could be waiting quite some time if you’re looking to mask your IP address during peak hours. Configuration is generally a simple affair, but you could be in for some trouble if you have any complications accessing their services. This Romanian and German VPN company offers a notoriously mediocre customer support experience.
Another proxy service, FilterBypass provides an admirable level of protection for the more casual needs of customers, but you’ll likely want something more secure when it comes to dealing with more sensitive information.
YouTube and Dailymotion are both supported, so you can easily access the videos you want even if they aren’t supported in your region. Just don’t expect FilterBypass to cut the mustard when you’re trying to protect your financial transactions. Both banking institutions and retail storefronts are blocked when using this service.
As long as you understand its inherent limitations, FilterBypass has a lot to love. A simple menu system allows you to encrypt pages and URLs or disable cookies and scripts with a single click. Unlike many other services, you don’t have control over where your traffic is routed, and FilterBypass logs your information and agrees to release it to authorities when requested, albeit for just a week.