Chatting with a friend, you heard about the IP address and how useful it is in being able to track it down. Intrigued by this, you immediately rushed to the Internet to try to figure out what it was without being able to pull a spider out of the hole. Well, you have come to the right place: make yourself comfortable and start focusing on the info in my guide on how to track down an IP address.
The IP address is a unique numerical address essential to identify computers and all other devices connected to a network in local networks and on the Internet (e.g. 192.168.x.x, 2.232.xxx.xx etc.). IP addresses can be dynamic, meaning they change with each connection, or static addresses, i.e. fixed. It is also essential to make a distinction between external (or public) IP addresses, which allow you to identify devices on the Internet, and internal (or private) ones, which are assigned by modems / routers to identify the various devices within the home or office network.
As you will have the opportunity to guess for yourself, tracking an IP address is essential to be able to correctly configure networks and firewalls as well as to identify who is on the other side of the screen. But… How do you do it? To find out, continue reading my article on the subject. Find all the info you need right below: you will see that in the end you will no longer even have a doubt. Happy reading!
Let us start this guide by trying to figure out how to track down your public IP address. Contrary to what you are surely thinking… It is a quite simple operation that can be conducted by anyone without any kind of difficulty. Read on to learn more.
To track down a public IP address, all you must do is open your web browser, connect to a dedicated online service, and take note of the info provided.
More precisely, you must open the IP-adress.com website and view the data attached to the page displayed: at the words Your IP Address is: you will find your public IP address indicated, next to the words Your IP Address Location is indicated the geographical position of the user, and your Internet provider immediately after the words the ISP of your IP address is.
Immediately after, you will find the My IP link, on which you just must click to get even more details about it. At the center of the page there is also a map indicating the location of the control unit to which the connection in use belongs, which you can view in detail by clicking on the Show map button. By doing so, you will not only have all the information available on the network, but you will also be able to geographically locate an IP address.
In addition to the one in question, dozens and dozens of similar services are available on the net. If what I have just indicated to you does not satisfy you, perhaps because you find it a bit too much, how to say, thin, you can turn to What Is My IP Address. The operation of the service is the same as what I indicated earlier.
After connecting to the main page of the same, all you must do is wait a few moments and you will be provided with all the necessary info: under the IPv4 heading you will be shown your public IP address, while next to the ISP entry: your provider is indicated. In correspondence with the items City: Region: and Country: you will find the geographical details relating to your IP with attached geographical map on the right.
Then click on the Show complete IP Details link in the center to see even more details about your IP, the company that provides the Internet connection and the geographical location of the user.
Note: If when you connect to one of the two services above your browser asks you for permission to communicate your geographical location to the site, it accepts. Otherwise, it will not be possible to correctly locate your connection and view its data on the map.
If you want to track down another person’s public IP address, such as a nuisance who bombards you with unwanted emails, you can use your online email client/service.
How do you do it? Nothing complicated: just extrapolate the IP address of the sender by consulting the header of the messages received. The header, in case you were not aware of it, is a report in which all the technical details of the emails that have been received are indicated.
To track the IP of the sender of an email, you must then open the message and follow these instructions based on the client/Web mail you use to manage your “electronic correspondence”. In all cases, the sender’s IP address is the one next to the Received: from string in the report.
- If you use Gmail, click on the ⋮ button located at the top right of the message box and select the Show original item from the menu that opens.
- If you use Apple Mail, select the reference mail, select the View item from the menu bar, move the cursor to Message and choose the Source Format item.
- If you use Tunderbird, select the item Other at the top right of the message screen, then click on the option View Source from the menu that appears.
- If you use Outlook.com, open the reference mail message and then click on the button … at the top right, next to the arrow symbols to reply or forward the message, then select the View option from the menu that opens, and then on the item View message source.
- If you use Outlook, click on the Properties option next to the message, then the File item, and finally the Internet Headers tab.
- If you use Yahoo Mail! open the email of your interest, click on the button … which is in the center, just below the message, and then on the item Display message in Raw format.
Note: For senders who use Web mail, the IP may be replaced by that of the mail service servers and therefore no longer corresponds to the real one. In that case, the system in question could therefore prove ineffective.
As for social media platforms, such as Instagram, there are no official tools, offered directly on the website or app, that allow you to track an IP address.
However, there are workarounds that require intervention from the user whose IP you want to locate. I am talking about it for informational purposes only: I do not assume any responsibility for any misuse of these tools.
This method consists of sending a direct message containing a link that will track the location and network details of the user who clicks on it, obtainable through some websites specifically dedicated to the generation of “masked” links to detect the data in question and keep track of it. One of them is Grabify IP Logger, which allows you to do this in just a few clicks.
First, connect to the main page of Grabify IP Logger and enter, in the appropriate field Enter a valid URL or tracking code…, a valid URL, such as the primary address of Instagram or an account on the site, or any social media or web page: type or paste it, then click the Create URL button. Confirm the procedure with a click on the I Agree & Create URL button.
If you wish, on the next page you can change the URL generated by clicking on the Change domain/Make a custom link button and select a domain, extension or other available parameters by clicking on the drop-down menus corresponding to the items Domain, Extension, Path and Parameter and choosing one of the options offered, which you will have to confirm by pressing the Reset button .
Then proceed by clicking on the Copy button next to the New URL item and copy the generated link. Now you can paste it into the text of your message to the user whose IP address you would like to locate on Instagram and send it.
When you click on the link, your visit to the page will be recorded on the Grabify tracking page, in the Results section. The address will appear under the heading IP Address, accompanied by all the information relating to it.
Note, however, that this type of tracking can lead to inaccurate results, also due to any precautions used by the user whose IP you would like to know.
Not even Facebook offers a tool to track a user’s IP address; in the same way, however, you can look at the alternative solutions I told you about in the previous chapter, which you can also use via private message on this platform.
If you are interested in knowing how to trace someone’s IP address via WhatsApp, you should know that even in this case there are no “official” solutions to do this, but you can try to do it using WhatsApp for PC directly from the terminal of your computer, both Windows and Mac.
To get started, open the WhatsApp application for PC or Mac and open the conversation with the user in question by clicking on the preview in the list on the left, making sure that it is the only active application and that there are no others open in the background.
After that, write to your contact, and wait for his response. Once received, quickly open the Windows Command Prompt by accessing the Start menu, typing cmd in the search bar and pressing the Enter key, or the macOS Terminal by clicking on the Launchpad icon in the Application Dock, typing “Terminal”, and clicking on theTerminal button that appears.
Once this is done, type netstat –a and press the Enter key on the keyboard: doing so, you will be shown a list of IP addresses. Locate the one related to the connection established with WhatsApp.
Alternatively, you can try the solution I recommended in this chapter, by sending a link via WhatsApp chat.
Telegram does not allow access to the IP address of other users through “official” features: also in this case, I refer you to the previous chapter in which I told you about an alternative method that could help you.
Now let us see how to track a local IP address. This is an operation that can be performed without difficulty on all computers, smartphones, and tablets: think, it is also possible to trace the IP address of the modem / router that generates the Internet connection. You can find everything explained in detail below.
Interested in knowing the local IP address of your Windows PC? Then all you must do is use the Command Prompt. Go to the Start menu, type cmd in the search bar that is shown to you and press the Enter key on your keyboard to access the Command Prompt.
In the window that will open at this point, type the ipconfig command, and then press the Enter key on the PC keyboard. Once this is done, you are shown all the information about your system’s network. The IP address of your computer is the one that is written next to the words IPv4 address.
If you are using a Mac, you can track your computer’s IP address by going to the Network section of System Preferences. To do this, first click on the System Preferences icon (the one depicting a gear wheel) on the Dock bar and then click on the Network icon in the window that opened on the desktop.
Then select the connection in use (e.g. Wi-Fi) from the left sidebar. Once this is done, you will find the “coordinates” of your Mac in the local network at the word Status: present on the right.
Are you using an Android smartphone or tablet? In this case you can find the IP address assigned to your device on the local network by accessing the screen where all the applications are grouped, pressing the Settings icon (the one in the shape of a gear wheel), selecting the Wi-Fi item in the Network section.
Now, tap on the symbol > corresponding to the name of the network to which you are connected (e.g. Wi-Fi network by Neo). In the next screen that will open at this point, locate the IP Address item. The set of digits that you find indicated under this heading is the IP address of your device.
Do you use an iPhone or iPad, and want to track your IP address? Then all you must do is access the settings related to your Internet connection. So go to the home screen, presses the Settings icon (the one in the shape of a gear), press on Wi-Fi, and then press on the (i) that you find next to the name of the network to which you are connected.
In the new screen that at this point you will be shown you will find the IP address of your device indicated at the words IP address. The same procedure also applies to iPad.
The IP address of the modem/router can also be traced. To do this, follow the simple instructions below.
- If you are using Windows, you can find the IP address of your modem/router by typing the ipconfig command in the Command Prompt and then locating the item located next to Default gateway attached to the window that appears.
- If you are using a Mac, you can find the IP address of your modem/router by accessing the Network section of System Preferences, selecting the connection in use from the left sidebar, clicking on the Advanced button… which is located at the bottom right, clicking on the TCP / IP tab and locate the item located next to the word Router.
The procedure, as you can see for yourself, is quite simple. However, if you think you need more you can consult my tutorial on How to Find Out and View Your IP Address in which, in fact, I proceeded to indicate all the possible systems to be able to trace the IP address of the modem / router.
In the previous lines I explained how to track an IP address but … Is this always possible? The answer is no. An IP address can be easily spoofed using a proxy such as Tor Browser, which allows you to surf the Internet anonymously.