Generally, VPNs are known as privacy tools that can keep you safe while browsing the internet. But it is also one of the best tools that you can use to spoof your geographic location and change your IP address. A VPN can make it look like you’re browsing the web from an entirely different country than yours.
Also, most modern VPNs are very easy to use and offer both mobile and desktop solutions. It is now easier than ever before to take your privacy into your own hands and bypass geographical restrictions with VPNs. In this article, you’ll get to know how to change your location or IP address with a VPN effectively, and the benefits that you get by doing so.
How does a VPN affect your IP and Location?
When you’re browsing the internet, your IP address can easily reveal your approximate geographic location. Every time you access the internet, your device and the internet server need to communicate with a “handshake” through the Internet Protocol (IP) address. This IP address lets the server know where to deliver the requested information, thereby revealing your geographical location.
Using a VPN almost completely alleviates this issue. When connected to a VPN, all of your requested and sent data packets goes through the VPN server. If your ISP or an individual tries to check the IP address, they will only be able to access the VPN server’s IP address and geographical location.
Reasons You May Want to Change Your IP address or Location
Apart from the aforementioned benefits, there are several other benefits that you can get by using a good VPN. Take a look at some of them below:
- Access Region-Locked Content – There are many shows, music, and other forms of media that are geographically locked. These can only be accessed by users from specific locations. A VPN allows you to easily bypass this by selecting a VPN server in the country where the content is available.
- Avoiding Government Censorship – There are some websites and content on the internet that can be blocked by a country’s government. Using a VPN can help you to exercise your right to information, and browse the internet without blatant censorship.
- The benefit of Geographical Pricing – Services and digital content on the internet is often priced differently in different geographical locations. You can search for the location with the cheapest pricing, switch to that location using a VPN.
- Avoid Hacks and Privacy Concerns – While using a VPN, the data requested and sent by your device to your ISP gets fully encrypted. This keeps hackers from intercepting your data and maintains your privacy on the internet.
How to Change Location or IP Address With VPN?
As mentioned earlier, a VPN will allow you to spoof your location as reported by your IP, and hide your original IP address. When choosing a VPN, you can opt for the industry-leading options, but these are often subscription-based with a monthly or yearly fee. There are free VPNs out there, but if you want maximum reliability and security, try to get one of the best VPNs available now.
Let’s get started with the guide on how to change your location or IP address with VPN –
- Decide which VPN you need to use, and register for their services.
- Make sure you’re connected to the internet and open your VPN application.
- Sign in to your account made earlier with the VPN provider.
- With most conventional VPNs, you will get a list of servers in various countries that you can choose from.
- Select your desired server, and press the connect button.
- After a while, you should be connected to your desired VPN server and your location and IP address will be different.
Keep in mind that using only a VPN cannot completely hide your location from websites that ask for your GPS location. In case you want to be sure that websites can’t track your exact location, then follow the steps listed below for both PCs and Android devices.
How to Disable GPS location access in Android
Android phones have a universal location access switch that you can turn off to prohibit apps to query your location. You can simply follow these steps to turn it off in your phone:
- Open the ‘Settings’ app on your device.
- If you have a phone with MIUI installed on it, you can navigate to ‘Location’.
- In case your device runs Stock Android, then navigate to ‘Security & screen lock’, and then ‘Location’.
- Turn the slider next to ‘Location Access’ off.
- Your apps and the websites you visit should not be able to access your location anymore.
How to Turn Off Location Access in PC Browser (Chrome)
Most major browsers on PCs have a location access switch that you can change to hide your geographical location from websites. Follow these steps to do so on the Chrome browser:
- Click on the three vertical dots on the top right of the Chrome window.
- Navigate to ‘Settings’ from the list.
- Go to the ‘Advanced’ section at the bottom of the settings page.
- Next, click on ‘Privacy and Security’.
- Select ‘Site Settings’ from the options that pop up.
- Under ‘Permissions’, go to ‘Location’.
- Tap on the bullet next to “Don’t allow sites to see your location”.
- Websites won’t be able to access your geographical location now.
Once you’re done with the procedures mentioned above, your location and IP address will be completely secure from prying eyes. Using a combination of VPN and turning off location access on your devices should make your internet browsing sessions completely anonymous. When choosing a VPN, try to get one of the paid options available. These are usually more reliable and have no data caps on usage.