What is my IP Address?

You’ve all heard of an IP address, but do you know what an IP address is, or what it’s for? Most of you are connected to the Internet so it’s important to know the basics. We’re here to answer your questions and explain everything you need to know about an IP address.

What is an IP address?

Let’s start with the basics.

Your IP address (short for Internet Protocol address) is a unique series of numbers used to identify your device when it’s connected to the Internet. Much like your home address, it’s needed to send and receive messages between websites. Which means, every device connected to the Internet has its own IP address in order to be differentiated. From the billions of other devices connected to the Internet at the same time.

Still can’t get your head around it?

Imagine you’re sending a letter to your old neighbour, Margaret. You’d put Margaret’s corresponding address on the front of the letter, and your return address on the back. Margaret receives your letter and uses your address to send a response straight back to you. The letter comes to you and not to someone else - because your address is unique. (Unless of course, Margaret uses the Royal Mail.)

So, what is my IP address and where can I find it?

You can check it out for yourself.

Your IP address at home is assigned to you by your ISP (Internet Service Provider - think BT, Sky, Virgin) and will always be displayed as a series of 4 numbers, like There are several ways to find it, but we’ve made it simple for you. Check out our helpful IP address locator tool at the top of the page. It’ll show your IP, your IP location, your ISP, the browser you’re using, and whether your connection is secure.

Got it? Great! Let’s continue.

Now your IP address doesn’t stay the same. Much like if you move house, your IP address changes based on the network you’re connected to and where you’re located. You have a different IP if you connect to the free wifi in your local Costa, at work, on holiday, and so on. As websites read your IP to send you information, they also know your location. Ever gone to google.com and have it automatically change to google.co.uk? Sometimes you don’t want that.

How do I change my IP address?

Don’t let your geo-location restrict you.

As much as your IP address is helpful to websites for sending you the right and relevant information based on your location, websites can also use this information to restrict, block, and track the content you access. Ever opened BBC iPlayer outside of the UK and found it doesn’t work? Or looked up a Winter coat on ASOS and suddenly it’s advertised everywhere on your Facebook News Feed? Your IP address gives away this information. So, what should you do? Change your IP.

Pretend you’re in another country.

Using ZenMate VPN (Virtual Private Network) is like having a PO box on the Internet - an address that no one can trace back to you. When you click on a website, ZenMate shields your real IP and gives one of ours. The website's data is delivered to our IP address - and then we forward it to you. The result? You appear to be in the country where our server is located; you'll surf the Internet anonymously - with added security. Access the Internet like a local, wherever you are in the world.

Try it for yourself! Use ZenMate to