In the real, physical world we are all identified in a variety of ways. Most of us carry ID such as driver’s license, passports, and even our credit cards. We are also linked to a physical location through a postal address which will be linked to all these forms of identification too. If you drop your ID card at the scene of a crime, you know there’s going to be a knock on your door pretty soon!
Online it’s a slightly different situation, however to think that when you are sitting behind your computer or phone that you’re completely invisible is a long way from the truth!
It’s tempting to check out an IP address and speculate that they’re all pretty much the same. The notation is standard across the board something like 192.168.1.23, every address will have the same numerical format. In the event that you’re an IT specialist you will have the capacity to identify further distinctions, i.e the fact that these addresses are split into different classes – A, B, C, D and E. Having said that to the ordinary user these are of minimal use and indeed interest.
There is an awful lot more that an IP address can reveal about the person or device using it that may not be so obvious. For a kickoff, your specific location – your IP address could be traced back very accurately to your geographical location. With access to the right resources it can be pinpointed to an exact location and device. This stuff is often a shock to people who remain at home browsing the world wide web, strongly believing they are reasonably anonymous. When in reality your IP address offers the digital equivalence of your mail address, it leads directly to your door.
Web sites utilize this data all the time, to modify exactly what you can see and precisely what you can access. One of the most popular techniques is to provide different price lists depending on your location, a straightforward but effective profit maximising strategy for the company. For example a web service could perhaps be sold at a much higher rate in wealthier areas than it could in poorer ones. The online games retailer will sell a digital copy of a game at a much higher price in Europe than it will in African or South America.
Doesn’t really appear fair does it? Most of us quite possibly expect that we’e all treated in the same way on the internet irrespective of who or where we are. Regrettably this on-line commercial discrimination is quite common and despite the fact that there are methods to bypass it such as using a VPN as illustrated in this helpful web post about the BBC services, the majority of people don’t have access to this technology.
Looking up your physical location isn’t the only part of data that can be identified from your IP address, there’s more. To online organisations and websites there’s another important piece of relevant information that is conveniently readily available through every address and that’s a specific classification. This is actually a further classification from the subnet addressing discussed above, and that’s whether the address is from a commercial or domestic range.
Supposing that you connect to the world wide web from your home address throughout a standard ISP then you’ll have a residential IP address. Supposing that you gain access to the web from your job or university you’ll have a commercial IP address. This is useful especially for commercial and ecommerce sites as they can easily figure out who is most likely to be a potential customer. Many websites have taken to blocking access to any IP address which is classified as a commercial address. They’ve carried this out partly to stop various application and marketing software having the ability to access the site or undoubtedly people from other geographic locations using VPNs. Which means that if you do want to run software such as sneaker bots and craigslist posters you’ll need to use specialised IPs through things like sneaker proxies too.
Many 1000s of individuals employed to use VPNs to gain access to the US version of Netflix which in turn is significantly superior to most other provincial variations. To stop this behavior Netflix blocked out access to all commercial IP addresses that included 99% of all the VPN addresses being used to access Netflix. Indeed now you can only access Netflix through a home internet connection or a VPN with a residential IP. Most other large internet companies don’t go to this level, however it’s likely to transform into an increasing trend.