Your IP address is like an Internet fingerprint; everything you come into contact with on the Web can be tracked back to you based on that address. Whether you mean to mask your IP address for security reasons, for concern over your privacy or to avoid having your traffic throttled by your ISP, the easiest way to do so is to connect using a virtual private network, or VPN, service that provides a false IP address. Some VPN providers will charge a fee, while others may offer a free service. Many VPN services will return IP addresses based in other countries and may have slower P2P speeds.
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Sign up for an account with Its Hidden. It has a Free account option and a Premium account. The Premium servers are faster and more secure than the free servers, but whichever you choose is dependent on your budget and needs.
Go to the Start Menu and select "Connet To." On the Connect to a Network screen, select the "Set up a connection or network" link.
Choose the "Connect to a Workplace" option; this will take you to the connection area that allows VPN set-up.
Select the option "Use my Internet Connect (VPN)." On the next screen you will need to enter the Its Hidden VPN server, which is "vpn.itshidden.com." You can make the destination name whatever you want to remember the connection.
Fill in your Its Hidden account user name and password, and click the "Create" button to finish setting up your VPN connection. To access the connection, go to "Start Menu" > "Connect To," select the name of your Its Hidden account, and click "Connect."
Download the PacketiX VPN Client Manager and the accompanying file, "secure.vpn." PacketiX is a commercial VPN service run out of Japan, but you can use the free version to test out the service.
Follow the installation prompts; when asked for a user name you can select whatever user name you choose. Once the installation is complete, click "Finish" and open the PacketiX client.
Right-click "Create New VPN Connection" and "Import VPN Connection Settings." Select the file "secure.vpn" to import these network settings. This will create a connection called "Secure" in your PacketiX client window.
Right-click "Secure" and select "Connect." You will be prompted to accept Terms and Conditions before using this VPN connection. It may take some time to connect to the VPN network. If prompted by Windows that this program has not been tested for Windows compatibility, click "Connect Anyway."
Open a browser to test your VPN connection; because the IP address PacketiX will use is located in Japan, you may find your websites displayed in Japanese.
Download the CyberGhost client, and install it on your computer. If you do not have the Microsoft .NET framework on your computer, the CyberGhost installer will install that as well.
Run CyberGhost. If you do not have an account, click "Create New Account." This will send a confirmation of account creation to your e-mail address, so it may take a bit of time. Once you have CyberGhost account credentials, enter them into the client and click "Login Now."
Connect to the VPN network; if you do not have a premium account, you will want to click "Connect Basic." The basic account has a 10 GB traffic limit. Once connected, CyberGhost will display your current IP and your fake IP.
Tips and warnings
- Many VPN providers will not work for torrent and P2P traffic, and some may still record browsing data.
- If your IP has been banned by a P2P tracker, there may be a good reason for this; be sure to obey the rules of your download website, and if you're downloading via BitTorrent, make sure that you're keeping a good share ratio.
- Even behind a fake IP address your activity can still be monitored. Engaging in illegal activity on the Internet -- including harassment, fraud and copyright infringement -- is not made safer behind a VPN.
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