When you connect to the Internet, you are assigned an IP address. This address reveals your location details and can be used to trace or block you. Websites can choose to display different languages based on IP addresses, or deny you access to online content. With your IP address and the cookies stored on your computer, websites assign you a commercial profile and later use that to sell you goods or services. When outside of the office, connecting to corporate servers and work accounts with a new IP also lets your manager or boss know your exact location.
You may want to avoid any of these scenarios. For instance, you want social media to reflect that you are on a fancy holiday while staying in your own house. Or maybe the opposite, you don’t want your boss to find out that you are working remotely from your vacation address instead of being at home. Or you want to watch a YouTube video that has restricted access. Or perhaps Google keeps switching to the local language, no matter how many times you have clicked the English button at the bottom of the site.
How to set up a VPN and spoof your location in less than 10 minutes
Regardless of how mundane or crazy your reason to change the IP address and location is, it can be done in less than 15 minutes. Here is how:
- Find a VPN provider (2 minutes). It is best to use a paid VPN from a renowned company like NordVPN, ExpressVPN or SurfShark. Free VPNs also work for hiding your location, but will not give you much protection. Nor will a free VPN unblock content from Netflix. You need a good VPN for that.
- Create an account and select a payment method (1 minute). The best VPN providers will only ask for an email address. They do not need more information from you. The best VPN providers also offer many ways to pay, including cryptocurrency for maximum privacy.
- Download and install the software (5-10 minutes). As soon as you have hit the payment button, you will be given a download link for the VPN software. A VPN software is somewhat between 16 and 35 MB. The download speed depends on your device and internet connection.
- Login (1 minute). Login with the email address you used for registration.
- Pick a new location (1 minute). From a map or a list of servers you can choose your new location by simply clicking on it.
A VPN has the huge benefit of encrypting all your online data, not just the location. This will protect you from hackers and allow you to make use of free and public WIFI networks wherever you go.
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