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How to Track an IP Address Location in Just a Few Simple Steps

Tracking an IP address location can be a useful tool for businesses and individuals alike. Whether you’re trying to find out the location of a suspicious website visitor or simply want to know where your customers are located, tracking an IP address is a simple process that can be done in just a few steps. Here’s how:

Step 1: Obtain the IP Address

The first step in tracking an IP address is to obtain the IP address itself. Depending on your needs, this may be as simple as asking the website visitor for their IP address or as complex as using network security tools to detect suspicious activity. Once you have the IP address, you can move on to the next step.

Step 2: Use an IP Tracker Tool

Once you have the IP address, you can use an IP tracker tool to locate its exact location. There are many free and paid tools available online that allow you to track an IP address quickly and easily. Simply enter the IP address into the tool and it will return information about its location, including country, city, region, and more.

Step 3: Analyze Your Results

Once you have located the IP address, you can analyze your results to gain insight into who is visiting your website or using your services. For example, if you are tracking customer activity on your website, you may find that most of your customers are located in a particular region or country. This information can help you tailor your marketing efforts accordingly and ensure that you are reaching the right audience with your message.

Tracking an IP address location doesn’t have to be complicated or time-consuming. With just a few simple steps and the right tools, you can easily locate any IP address quickly and accurately. By understanding where your customers are located and what they’re doing on your website, you can make better decisions about how best to reach them with your message.

This text was generated using a large language model, and select text has been reviewed and moderated for purposes such as readability.


how is ip address location determined

How Does IP Address Geolocation Work?

Home » IP Geolocation » How Does IP Address Geolocation Work?

IP address geolocation is the process of uncovering an online user’s geographic location based on the IP address of their computer or mobile device.

IP address geolocation is a useful tool for businesses that rely on the insights provided by knowing where their users are located in the world. Through an IP address alone, a company can determine not only in which country a user is located, but also the state, city, and postal code-globally.

Using this information, businesses can serve up localized content and targeted ads, as well as help to prevent online fraud, amongst many other beneficial applications. And while it’s clear that IP address geolocation is a useful tool for a range of businesses, it’s less clear exactly how the service works.

Here, we’ll breakdown what IP address geolocation is, explain how it functions, and delve further into some of its practical applications.

What is an IP Address?

An IP address, short for Internet Protocol address, is a unique numerical label that identifies a device on the internet. IP addresses are typically provided by Internet Service Providers (ISPs) whenever a device connects to the internet. Each ISP usually has a range of IPs from which they ascribe to users in a certain area as they connect to the internet.

From just an IP address, businesses can learn unique insights regarding the user to whom the address is associated, including geographical location, demographic data, connection type, and proxies.

How IP Address Geolocation Works

When an internet user uses their computer or mobile device to access a webpage, their IP address is shared with that webpage through a coding script. For example, if a website is built using PHP, the PHP script: echo `Client IP address: `.$_SERVER[`REMOTE_ADDR`]; can be implemented so that when a user requests access to the site, their IP address is shared with the page.

IP address geolocation then uses IP-to-location databases to determine which IP range (again, provided by ISPs) the provided IP falls within. Then you can determine in which geographic location that IP range is used, thus determining the approximate location of the user. Using this information, one can determine such information as the country, state, and city in which a user is located. However, ISPs tend to shuffle IPs through a few users within a certain area, which means IP address geolocation can never be 100% accurate.

How Precise is IP Address Geolocation?

The exactness of IP address geolocation is based on the ability of the service that the client is utilizing. While some services may be able to locate an IP address to within a certain country, others are capable of locating an IP to within a few miles of the exact location.

NetAcuity from Digital Element has the power to track an IP with an accuracy rate of 99.99% at a country level, 98%+ at a regional level, and 97%+ at a city level—globally. Therefore, if you need to geotarget an entire country or a ZIP+4 area, NetAcuity is the solution for you.

In addition to being hyper-accurate, NetAcuity is privacy-sensitive and neither gathers nor displays any personally identifiable information regarding a user.

Practical Uses of IP Address Geolocation

When a user connects to a company’s website, said company then has access to that user’s IP address. As previously mentioned, this allows the company to access such key insights as the user’s geographic location, demographic data, connection types, proxies and more.

These insights are incredibly beneficial to a range of industries as they allow companies to do things like target advertising, localize content, enhance analytics, manage digital rights, prevent online fraud, and other valuable applications.

Industry-Leading IP Address Geolocation Solutions

Digital Element is proud to provide the most accurate and granular IP address geolocation solutions in the world. Through IP address geolocation, we provide our customers with invaluable consumer insights through location targeting, proxy detection , VPN identification, and a host of other IP-based data points.

These IP solutions are utilized by the world’s leading brands, helping them to gain key consumer insights and a competitive advantage. Check out the range of practical applications provided by NetAcuity that you can use to give your company a competitive advantage.

Want geolocation tailored to your business needs? Our experts are here to help:

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Accuracy rates of 99.99% at a country level, 98%+ at a regional level, and 97%+ at a city level – globally.

No personally identifiable information is ever gathered or stored, helping you stay GDPR compliant.


Our solutions cover 99.9999% of all seen IP addresses worldwide and work – even if a device’s GPS is turned off.

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IP Geolocation: The Ultimate Guide

how is ip address location determined

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how is ip address location determined

Did you know that it is possible to determine the physical location of a computer or device on the internet using its IP address? This process is called IP geolocation , and it has a variety of applications. For example, online businesses can use IP geolocation to determine the country of their customers in order to customize their website content for them. Law enforcement agencies can use IP geolocation to track criminals, and parents can use it to keep tabs on their children's online activities.

What is IP Geolocation?

IP Geolocation is the process of mapping an IP address to a physical location. This process can be used to determine the country, region, city, latitude, longitude, and other information associated with an IP address.

IP Geolocation is typically performed using an API (Application Programming Interface). This API can be used to match an IP address with a zip code, country region city, latitude longitude, or other data point. IP Geolocation can be performed for both IPv4 and IPv6 addresses.

The process of IP Geolocation is essential for many applications, such as online advertising, content personalization, and fraud detection. By understanding the location associated with an IP address, businesses can tailor their content and services to better meet the needs of their users.

Learn how to find your IP address on your phone .

How does IP Geolocation work?

If you've ever wondered how website providers are able to figure out where you're located , the answer is IP geolocation. This technology uses your IP address to determine your approximate geographic location. While this may not be as accurate as using your postal code, it's still a pretty good way to get a general idea of where someone is located. And best of all, it's relatively easy to do an IP lookup to get this information.

There are a number of different ways to perform an IP geolocation lookup. One popular method is to use a free online IP geolocation tool. These tools will typically give you the city, state, and country for the IP address in question. They may also provide additional information such as the time zone and ISP details. Another option is to use a paid service (like Abstract's IP geolocation API) that offers more comprehensive geolocation data.

Whatever method you choose, geolocation by IP is a quick and easy way to get a general idea of where someone is located. And while it's not always 100% accurate, it's usually good enough to give you a general idea of someone's location.

What data can you get with IP geolocation?

IP Geolocation is the mapping of an IP address to the real-world geographic location of the device it is being used on. Data associated with IP geolocation can include continent, country, city, and time zone. IP geolocation can be used for a variety of purposes, including identifying the location of website visitors, Sybil attacks, and enforcing geographic restriction s on web content. The accuracy of IP geolocation data varies depending on the database used , but it is generally accurate within a few hundred kilometers. To get started with using IP geolocation data, you will need to choose a web service that provides real-time data in JSON format. Once you have chosen a provider, you can start making requests to the API to receive information about specific IP addresses. In most cases, you will only need to provide the IP address you want to look up. However, some providers may also require you to identify your usage type or provide additional information about your account.

How accurate is IP Geolocation?

If you've ever wondered how websites are able to tell where you're accessing them from, the answer is IP geolocation. By tracking your IP address, companies are able to get a general idea of your geographical location. This information is then used for a variety of purposes, including targeted advertising and content customization. But how accurate is IP geolocation?

Although IP addresses can be used to pinpoint a user's general location, the reality is that they're not always 100% accurate. This is because IP addresses can be spoofed and because different internet providers can have different coverage areas. As a result, it's possible for a user's true location to be different from what an IP geolocation service reports. However, in most cases, the information provided by these services is still quite accurate.

So, if you're ever curious about where in the world someone is accessing a website from, IP geolocation is a pretty good way to find out. Just keep in mind that the results may not be 100% accurate .

What is an IP Geolocation API?

If you're not familiar with IP geolocation, it's basically the process of determining the physical location of a device using its IP address. This can be useful for a variety of purposes, such as targeted advertising or finding the nearest server. There are a number of different ways to do this, but the most common is to use an IP geolocation API.

An IP geolocation API is a rest API that takes an IP address as input and returns information about the location of that IP address. This information can include the country code, region, city, and even latitude and longitude coordinates. In addition, some APIs will also return domain name information.

IPv6 addresses are becoming increasingly common, so it's important to make sure that your chosen API supports them. In addition, you'll want to make sure that the API updates its database frequently so that you're always getting accurate results.

There are a number of different IP geolocation APIs available, so take some time to compare them to find the one that best suits your needs.

Browse the best IP geolocation APIs - read in-depth reviews and ratings.

How to get the IP address of website visitors?

If you've ever wanted to know where in the world your website visitors are coming from, now you can with IP address geolocation. This technology uses the IP address of a visitor to determine their location information. While this may sound like a complicated process, it's actually quite simple and there are many free IP tools available online. all you need is the IP address of the person you want to track and the area code or isp.

Once you have this information, you can use one of the free IP geolocation services to find out the general location of the person. This is a great way to get an idea of who your audience is and where they're located. It can also be useful for security purposes as you can see if someone is trying to access your site from a different country. So whether you're curious about your website's reach or want to keep your site safe, IP geolocation is a tool you should definitely consider using.

Learn how to track the IP address of your website visitors.

IP Geolocation Examples and tutorials

By mapping IP addresses to a physical location, geolocation can be used for tasks like website localization, content personalization, online fraud detection, and more.

If you're looking to get started with IP geolocation, these guides are for you. Check out these IP geolocation examples and tutorials:

  • How to add IP Geolocation to your website
  • How to add IP Geolocation to a WordPress site
  • How to geolocate an IP address in Python
  • Validating an IP Address and Getting Geolocation Information With Python
  • Get IP address with Python and Regex
  • How to geolocate an IP address in PHP
  • How to do IP Geolocation in jQuery
  • How to geolocate an IP address in JavaScript
  • HTML5 Geolocation
  • Get IP address in Node.js
  • Get IP address in Angular.js
  • Client IP address in Node.js
  • How to use IP Geolocation in React.js
  • How to Find IP address in Linux
  • Get an IP address using Ruby on Rails
  • IP geolocation in Ruby on Rails

How to use Cloudflare for IP Geolocation

If you're running a website, it's important to know where your visitors are coming from. That's where Cloudflare's IP geolocation comes in. It captures the country code of your visitors and passes it along to you in ISO 3166-1 Alpha 2 format. This information can be used for a variety of purposes, such as offering discounts to customers in specific countries.

IP geolocation is easy to use - simply enable the feature in Cloudflare and you're good to go. Keep in mind, however, that proxy servers can often inaccurately report a user's location. So, if accuracy is critical, you may want to supplement Cloudflare's data with another source. Additionally, keep in mind that IP geolocation is just one way to determine a user's location - others include their IP address, search engine queries, weather data, and local version of their operating system.

Read the whole guide here on Cloudflare IP geolocation .

How to localize your prices with IP geolocation?

There are a number of reasons why you might want to use IP geolocation on your website. For example, you might want to adjust prices based on the visitor's location, or you might want to customize the content that is displayed to them. Additionally, IP geolocation can be used for security purposes, such as blocking access to certain areas of your website based on geographical location.

To set up price localization based on IP addresses, you will need to use an IP geolocation database.

Learn more about price localization based on IP addresses .

How to determine geolocation and IP addresses in Google Maps

Google Maps is one of the most popular geolocation tools and provides a number of ways to determine the geolocation of an IP address.

The first step is to find the IP address you want to geolocate. This can be done by using the "dig" or "nslookup" commands in a terminal window. Once you have the IP address, you can enter it into the Google Maps search bar. The results will show you the approximate location of the device based on its IP address. You can also use the "reverse IP lookup" tool to find all of the websites hosted on a specific IP address. This can be useful for pinpointing the exact location of a server or identifying potential fraudsters who are using multiple addresses to mask their true location.

Learn more about IP geolocation with Google Maps .

FAQs about IP Geolocation

What is ip geolocation.

IP geolocation is the process of determining the physical location of a device based on its IP address.

How does IP geolocation work?

IP geolocation works by mapping IP addresses to a physical location. This can be done using a variety of methods, such as looking up the address in a database or using the Google Maps API.

Why is IP geolocation important?

IP geolocation can be used for a variety of purposes, such as website localization, content personalization, online fraud detection, and more.

What are some use cases for IP geolocation?

Some common use cases for IP geolocation include website localization, adjusting prices based on location, customized content delivery, and security.

How accurate is IP geolocation?

IP geolocation is generally accurate within a few hundred miles, but there are a number of factors that can affect its accuracy, such as proxy servers and VPNs .

What are the limitations of IP geolocation?

IP geolocation is not 100% accurate and should not be used as the sole basis for making decisions. Additionally, it is important to keep in mind that IP addresses can change over time, so you may need to periodically update your database.

How can I improve the accuracy of my IP geolocation data?

There are a number of ways to improve the accuracy of your IP geolocation data, such as using a commercial database or supplementing it with another source. Additionally, you can use multiple methods to determine the location of a device, such as looking up the IP address in a database, using the Google Maps API, or using the reverse DNS lookup tool.

What are some common mistakes when using IP geolocation?

Some common mistakes when using IP geolocation include relying on it for 100% accuracy, not updating your database regularly, and not supplementing it with other data sources.

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how is ip address location determined

Users Insights

How the Geolocation Works

Users Insights uses an IP-based geolocation for its Geolocation module . In this guide we are going to explain the IP-based geolocation works in more detail.

wordpress users geolocation

What is Geolocation

Geolocation is the process of determining the geographic location, typically represented by latitude and longitude coordinates, of a device or user based on various data sources, including GPS, IP address, Wi-Fi networks, or cellular tower information. This technology is widely used in applications to provide location-specific services, track assets, and personalize user experiences.

What is IP-based Geolocation

IP-based geolocation is the process of finding geographical location of a device or user by analyzing their IP (Internet Protocol) address. This process relies on databases containing IP address ranges mapped to specific geographic coordinates, allowing applications and services to identify the approximate physical location of the device or user connecting to a network.

How the IP-based Geolocation works

Whenever you connect to the Internet you get a unique identifier for you or your network, called an IP address. Usually ISPs ( Internet Service Providers ) have a certain range of IPs that they work with, and they can delegate different addresses to the different users as they connect.

The way the IP-based geolocation works is simply by checking which IP range is used by which area, using an IP-to-location database. So, you can find the information like the country and the city that your users come from, just by knowing their IP address. The IP-based geolocation however can’t be 100% precise, as it relies on an address that is usually being shuffled through a few users of a certain area.

But this is also the reason why IP location is so useful. And although you won’t get your user’s house number, you can get a great deal of information about them without ever having to even ask for it. Once they connect to your site you already know their IP address, so just by using the Users Insights Geolocation module, you can find their location. Usually the country accuracy is around 99%. The city accuracy could be a bit less depending on the user’s country, but it’s still very high.

This product includes GeoLite2 data created by MaxMind, available from https://www.maxmind.com .

Strengths and weaknesses

IP-based geolocation is the most used technique for tracking the user locations for a reason. It works very well for what it’s been intended, and the other techniques have their own use cases.

For example, you could use the HTML5 geolocation API, which gives you a GPS-like location, with a great deal of precision. But unlike the IP-based geolocation this technique requires the user’s consent. So, they’ll be prompted to enable it, and unless your site really needs that, it’s very likely that users won’t be willing to share their location.

Hence, IP-based geolocation works very well for analytics-type analysis, as you can reliably collect a lot of data. It can also be used for user interface customization but it has its limitations due to its nature.

In addition, it’s worth pointing out that no geolocation technique is 100% precise. For IP-based geolocation users can have VPNs, Proxys and other IP obfuscation tools. The HTML5 geolocation is also susceptible to data injection (fake locations sent by the user), or no data being sent at all since it requires the user consent. So, if your application requires the exact address of the user to the precision of their house number or flat number, the most reliable way to obtain this data is just by asking the user for it.

Geolocation in WordPress and WooCommerce

Any website that has the IP address of an visitor or user can make a geolocation lookup (by using an IP location lookup service) to get approximate location of the user. WordPress by default only stores IP addresses of users that are leaving comments on your website. These IP addresses are stored in your database and are used in order to help site owners with unwanted comments or spam. WooCommerce also uses customers IP address for variety of reasons, like detecting customer location for shipping and taxes purposes, fraud detection etc.

All this IP detection and usage in WordPress and WooCommerce is used internally (behind the scene) meanings this geolocation data is not easily available to the WordPress admin. For this you need a seperate geolocation plugin, like Users Insights , that can give you general insights about where your users come, including an interactive map view and different location based filters. With this information you can analyze your user base, which can help you provide a better user experience for your customers and also make better informed decisions.

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What Is IP Address Geolocation and How to Change It?

ip address geolocation blog post cover img

What is IP geolocation?

IP geolocation  is the mapping of an IP address to the geographic location of the internet from the connected device. By geographically mapping the IP address, it provides you with location information such as the country, state, city, zip code, latitude/longitude, ISP, area code, and other information.

What is it for?

Various systems use geolocation databases for IP addresses. The reasons for this are numerous, but it is mainly used for deducting the user’s location so that the system could give more personalized offers (products, services, etc.).

In this case, we will deduct the geolocation for the following IP address: . The easiest way to do it is to use free online tools like  iplocation.net  (google ip geolocation tools ).

IP Address Geolocation Blog Post Image 1

Paste the IP address in the IP Location Finder text box and press the IP Lookup button. In this case, the result you get is this:

IP Address Geolocation Blog Post

In the picture above, we can see that the tool found the IP record on three databases: IP2Location,  ipinfo.io , and DB-IP. The text in the brackets denotes where the information was taken from and when it was last updated (e.g., IP2location (Product: DB6, etc.) means that the geolocation record for the IP was taken from DB6 database).

Wrong geolocation

Sometimes you might see that geolocation data varies from database to database. One system might deduct that your IP address is from Germany, other states that it is from France. How is that possible?

There are many reasons why this might happen, yet it is basically due to the difference in database records.

Changing the records

If you find your geolocation wrong and you would like to change it, you need to request a correction for a record. The means of doing this varies depending on the database, for example, DB-IP handles the requests via support email, where you should state the IP (with the subnet) and the location information (City, State, Country, Postal Code). Other databases like MaxMind use  data correction web forms  so that all requests had the same standard and could be handled by API.

So to change the records, you need to find the way the database handles the requests.

You might be contacted by some person, who supervises the database system, asking you to provide traceroutes (to at least one IP of the subnet range). To do that using Windows OS, press  Start , type  cmd , hit Enter then type:

and type the IP you would like to trace instead of  your_ip . For our example IP: the result looks like this:

ip address geolocation blog post img 3

Take notice that the traceroute will be different if it is done from other locations that are due to the fact that the utility checks the connection from one  PoP  to the other, mapping the route. The first column denotes the number of the Hop, second, third, and fourth denotes the latency between hops (checked three times), and the last one denotes the address of the Hop. Take notice that latency between some PoPs is marked like * – that is because, for security purposes (DDoS), some PoPs are configured not to handle  ICMP  requests. Find more information about tracert  here .

So, if you are asked for a traceroute, copy the result from cmd to a text document and send it to them, in most cases, that is enough.

Still Wrong IP Geolocation?

You have requested for data correction, yet you still see the same results? Some databases refresh their records once a month, others – once in a week. Depending on the database, it may not have updated your records yet.

You can see that utilities see your IP address correctly, but some sites (system) still states that you are from the wrong location? Most probably, a system like that uses the database, which holds a false record. In this case, you would have to find out what database it is and then ask its support for correction.

Alternatively, you can talk with the Heficed team to discuss the issues you are facing, and we are ready to help. Want to try Heficed services? Get started with the IP Address Market, where you will find all RIRs and many geolocations in one place at an affordable price! You can run bare-metal and virtual servers with the IPs ordered in IP Address Market.

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IP address location – how it works

IP address location works by establishing a link between a user IP address and its geographical location. The location (also known as Geo IP location) generally applies to a range of IPs rather than each individual IP. Therefore, there is always a measure of privacy when an IP address geo location is detected. Let’s discuss the methods being involved in detection of Internet Protocol address location.

There are two primary methods of getting an IP address location

ip address location data example

When a computer that’s connected to Internet is assigned a Wide Area Network (WAN) IP address, the location data of that IP is gathered from either one of the following sources

  • IP address IP-to-location computer database
  • ISP and website hosting providers’ internal IP address location database

Each source of the geographical location data has its own advantages and a purpose of utilization. They are not interchangeable since the precision and the data privacy aspects play a role on a case basis.

In this article we will provide basics about each IP location data source and their common use.

1. IP-to-location (Geo IP) computer database

This is the most commonly utilized source of an IP address location information. It is used in about 98% of all web applications and hardware devices that use connecting device geolocation for various purposes.

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ip address database sample

The Geo IP location databases can be either embedded into the device software or remotely hosted by a third party server. For web applications that need a high speed of IP data to be gathered, the databases of this type are generally hosted and embedded into the web application itself.

One of the examples of Geo IP database usage is website statistics services such as provided by TraceMyIP. It allows its users to see a general location of visitors that come for information to their websites. It provides a useful resource to webmasters to understand the impact and geographical coverage that their websites provide to their visitors. It also helps to determine if web publishers’ marketing efforts work for the geo locations that are most important to them.

Although the Geo IP databases are utilized in majority of situations, there are a few things to note about their limitations

  • The IP location that comes from bulk IP information databases do not provide an exact location of each IP address, but rather provide an approximate location area of an IP range to which a particular address belongs. Therefore, this data cannot be used to determine a connecting device street address for example.
  • Some databases are more precise that others and therefore not all services that use Geo IP databases provide the same level of precision. This is because the most accurate databases can be cost prohibitive to utilize for a small online business. Some moderate precision IP databases for example are updated monthly and can cost thousands of dollars a month.
  • Most commonly, device IPs are dynamic by nature, meaning each Internet connection can change its IP assignment from time to time. Mobile devices, for example, change their IP address each time a different cell phone tower is connected to a device. It makes it more complex to track a specific device by an IP address since its IP address is frequently altered.
  • The data that is compiled into an IP database has many different sources, and each source has its own privacy policy that mostly prohibits disclosure of an exact location of a device user.
  • Geo IP databases do not compile a location for each IP address individually. Instead a range of IP addresses is grouped into a block with a location assignment. This is done to reduce the size of a database, which otherwise could scale to terabytes if each IP had its own data block. Even though the size of a database could be managed, searching such database for each IP query would take so much time and CPU power that it would become very inefficient in scope of high performance web applications.

The most common database sources of Geo IP data

the regional Internet registry

The main sources of IP location data are the regional Internet data registrars. These distribute and allocate IPs to organizations positioned in their associated service regions. These include but not limited to:

  • RIPE Network Coordination Centre (RIPE NCC)
  • American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN)
  • Latin American and Caribbean Internet Address Registry (LACNIC)
  • African Network Information Centre (AfriNIC)
  • Asia-Pacific Network Information Centre (APNIC)

Other additional sources that can be used for an IP address database compilation are:

  • ISP providers
  • Web hosting data centers
  • Local area civilian service provider websites that gather IP addresses of people actively for applicable services based on specific address location
  • Human resources agencies that register its own user group and collect IPs which are later associated with specific individuals
  • Bank and energy/supply utility companies which capture user IP addresses through their online gateways
  • Data mining organizations such as weather forecasting websites that can associate IP addresses accessing region specific forecasts.
  • Government agencies that provide online services to their citizens

2. ISP and website hosting providers’ internal IP address databases

This type of IP location sources are the most accurate, and depending on the requesting agency, they can pinpoint an IP address location to an exact street address and the actual individual or an organization that utilizes it, including the full history of utilization and IPs used in the past.

isp provider geolocation data example

The advantages and disadvantages of acquiring information from ISP provides and web server hosting companies directly are:

  • The data that discloses individuals or a specific property is not easily accessible, generally not in real-time and requires proper clearances and paperwork
  • This method is mostly used for legal enforcement or internal uses that manage service subscribers
  • There are no IP location databases with this informational accuracy that’s available in bulk to any third party consumers. The data release is generally managed on a case by case basis.

Both methods of IP location data acquisition have its purpose, definition of usage and accessibility. IP addresses cannot be closely compared to phone number since they are interchangeable. This means that even if someone captures your IP address, there is a little privacy concern because:

  • The IP location that’s available to third parties is not exact, and your IP address will eventually change, unlike a phone number that is generally utilized for extended periods of time as a point of contact. The IP addresses are not used as a point of contact for Internet access by individuals or organization.
  • If you are connected to Internet through a router with a firewall, a direct link between an external device cannot be easily established with your device in order to access a data on your Internet connected device unless there’s a malware or another method of data reach is present.

One of the most common uses for acquiring an exact location of an IP address that’s connected to an event that breaches a law is crime investigation. When a crime is committed using a network connected device which IP address has been linked to this type of activity, the legal authorities immediately issue a warrant on personal information release. The warrant is served to an ISP provider or a web server hosting agency that provides the requested personal data information to assist in the legal proceedings.

It is also worth to mention that there is another way of getting a User IP location, which is HTML5 geolocation API that produces sufficiently accurate results. It approximates the location based on a number of factors including the public IP address, device GPS information, cell tower data, a list of known Wifi access points and their signal strengths. However, unlike the database driven location data, HTML5 API requires an Internet user to provide an interactive consent before this method could be used. This renders it ineffective for the purpose of passive location acquisition and thus is not suitable for most purposes as discussed above.

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