Internet Privacy, IP Address and Proxy FAQ

What is an IP address?

A string of numbers assigned to you by your Internet Service Provider whenever you connect online.

Can I be traced through my IP address?

Your IP address reveals only the location and name of your ISP. Your ISP itself may have records of your computer using their service at such and such a time, but an ISP will usually not disclose this information without a search warrant / court order.

Internet Privacy, IP Address and Proxy FAQ

How long does an ISP keep logs of user IP addresses?

No one knows, but it could be anywhere from months to a few years. This is necessary to monitor bandwidth usage.

Someone online has threatened they can find me through my IP address. Can they do this?

Most likely they're bluffing. Unless you run your own server or live in the same building as your ISP's office, a stranger can't find you using just your IP address.

Can someone find out my username or password based in my IP address?

No. Your ISP is the only one that knows these details.

Do my emails display my IP address?

Yes. To send email anonymously, you'll want to use an anonymous remailer or an anonymous proxy.

What is a proxy server?

A third party server used as a go-between by a client computer that doesn't want to connect directly to the Internet.

Can a proxy server give me internet privacy?

Not if it's just a proxy server. A mere proxy server will announce to cyberspace that it's acting as a proxy for such and such IP address user (your computer), so you can still be traced through it.

What type of proxy server should I use to be able to surf anonymously?

You need an anonymous proxy server that's secure, reputable and reliable. You will most likely have to pay a fee.

How can an anonymous proxy server protect me?

Mainly by hiding your real IP address and blocking malicious scripts and programs from entering your system. You may get a different IP address each time you use the proxy. Additionally, some anonymous proxies claim they can't disclose your data even if subpoenaed (court ordered) since they don't store user logs.

How much does it cost to get an anonymous proxy server?

Could be $19.95, or $29.95 or $99.95. It all depends on the server and the service features. Go check out the anonymous proxy server's website and compare their product services.

Are free proxy servers safe to use?

Not if you're serious about your security and privacy. Many free proxies are either incorrectly set up, or owned by malicious people who want to use your data for their own ends. Beware of using free proxies and anonymous proxy servers that don't allow secure connections. And no matter what server you use, always encrypt private data.