IP Blocking: What It Is and Why It Exists

IP Blocking: What It Is and Why It Exists

What is IP Blocking

At one point or another, you must have tried to gain access to a website or some content and realized it was impossible. This is due to a website security feature called IP blocking and even though it may be hugely inconveniencing to you, it plays an important role on the internet.

Your IP gets blocked probably because of something you did that goes against the website’s policies, or a factor that is outside your control like your location. But what is IP blocking and how can you use a proxy to get your IP unblocked?

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Why Do IP Addresses Get Blocked?

IP blocking is an important factor that ensures the Internet functions properly. It can be regarded as an extra security layer on websites so that they can selectively grant access to users based on already established criteria.

Since there are a lot of people on the internet with different intentions, IP blocking is useful to curb excesses like suspected malicious activities. There are different reasons why a website could be blocking your IP, and some of them are as follows:

  • Control online traffic: when there are too many users trying to gain access to a website at the same time, it could crash the site. Such a surge could happen when bots are used and real customers may get blocked out in the process.
  • Protect data and information: some institutions and workplaces have data that is only meant for those working or studying there. In this scenario, IP blocking is needed to prevent outsiders from having access to such data as it could be sensitive and ugly if hackers lay hands on them.
  • To block bots and prevent spam: most websites have suffered from the effects of bot activities. Ecommerce sites for instance have numerous bots trying to make bulk purchases for resale at a much higher price. Bots are also seen in data extraction from websites. Spam is another unattractive occurrence on websites, especially in the comments sections. All of these actions can cause a website to crash, or slow down its services to real and potential customers.
  • Prevent Fraudulent transactions: fraudulent transactions are rife especially on eCommerce sites. To prevent such transactions, online businesses can use IP blocks to refuse transactions from countries or regions that have a high rate of fraud.
  • Localizing content: when you access the internet, you only see the content you are meant to see based on your location. Every big company has a different category of content specific to different customers based on their needs and locations. And so some video content for instance may be blocked for someone in another location, for example, a Dutch video blocked for someone in the US.
  • Social and political status: countries such as China, Russia, and Belarus that limit the freedom of speech have IP blocks set up. These prevent those in such countries from having access to content online.

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Unblock Your IP

As we have discussed, IP blocking is necessary but even at this, there are some situations where such blocks would need to be bypassed. Examples of such situations could be if you need a video online but can’t stream because it isn’t available in your country. In such a situation, you can easily go around the restriction by changing IP.

To do this you will need proxies and VPNs. Both tools change your IP address so that you appear to be connecting to the internet from a different location. For static connections, it would be better to use a VPN, while proxies are great for use with bots, accessing eCommerce sites, and also to get access to otherwise blocked content due to geo-blocks.

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How IP Blocks Work

IP blocks are responses to undesired activity on a website that has the potential to harm the website. Blocked IPs can’t access the specific contents and sites they have been blocked from.

Why Do IPs Get Blocked?

There are different reasons by which a site may ban your IP address, but the most common ones are; content localization, data protection from outsiders, bot and spam blocks, and blocks due to socio-political issues.

How To Unblock My IP

You can unblock your IP by changing your IP address. this is done by connecting to a proxy or VPN.

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Many internet users have encountered restrictions or access denial to some websites or contents, and the question “what is IP blocking” keeps being asked. As annoying as IP blocking may be, it is necessary on the internet as an added layer of security and control against damage.

It’s a security protocol that prevents a user with said IP from gaining access to an otherwise blocked site or content. By connecting to a VPN or proxy, however, you can get around this block as your IP would be changed to that of another location where the block doesn’t apply.

About the author

Rachael Chapman

A Complete Gamer and a Tech Geek. Brings out all her thoughts and Love in Writing Techie Blogs.

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