Unless you have been living under a rock for the past few years, you would know that your internet activity is tracked by interested parties. These include search engines, marketers and employers among others. All of them have vested interests in knowing what you do when online. For instance, marketers can discover the items you are most likely to search for and lead you to websites which sell them. This is made possible through your computer’s Internet Protocol (IP) address.
The IP address is basically a string of binary numbers that serve as identification for your computer on the internet. Any activity from your IP can be tracked to your computer. Whenever you connect to the internet, regardless of whether on a computer or a mobile device, the IP address remains the same. This is the case for Mac users as well. Regardless of whether you’re using a Mac PC or an iPhone/ iPad, your online activity can be traced through your IP address.
The IP address for your Mac device can be static, i.e. it remains unchanged, or dynamic, wherein a new number is assigned to your device each time you connect to the internet. You can prevent this from happening by hiding your IP address. There are perfectly good tools available that enable you to keep your IP address from prying eyes, ensuring that your online activity cannot be tracked. Apart from protecting your privacy, there are other reasons why you need to learn how to hide your IP address:
- You want to connect to a different internet network using a device that has the same IP address.
- You are using a web proxy to keep your online activity secret.
- You are looking for ways to access websites that have been blocked in your region.
In all these instances, hiding your IP address on a Mac device comes in handy. Keep in mind that the IP address provided to you comes from your Internet Service Provider (ISP), which makes it difficult to change it. What you can do instead is hide it.
There are two main ways you can hide your IP address on Mac devices. Let’s look at each one:
Using a Proxy Server
You can use a proxy server to hide your IP address. Below are the steps you have to follow for this:
- Open up your Network settings by clicking the Network icon you see in the System Preferences. To get there, you have to first click on the Apple logo present on the desktop. System Preferences appears in the dropdown box that opens up.
- Select the network through which you connect to the internet. After this, click on Advanced and then on Proxies.
- A box appears on the left of the screen giving you the option of selecting a protocol of your choice. There are numerous options, so you can select the one that appears to be the best for your needs.
- A list of proxy servers appears after you have selected the protocol. You can select any of the proxy servers you want. This will hide your original IP address and assign a different IP address to your Mac computer.
Changing Your Private IP Address
Another way you can alter the IP address assigned to your device is by changing its Private IP address. The steps for this are so easy that even a non-technical person can tackle them.
- The first two steps are the same as that for using a proxy server. The only difference is that you have to select TCP/IP instead of Proxies from the ‘Advanced’ settings.
- Use the dropdown box to select Using DHCP with manual address. Doing so enables you to enter the IP address you want to use. Also, you can select the ‘Manually’ option and enter the IP address to be displayed when you are online.
This option is easier and safer than using a proxy server. That being said, both are equally effective at getting the job done.
So, keep these two techniques for hiding your IP address on a Mac in mind to make the task easier for you.