The IP address is your digital identifier on the Internet and it is associated with your computer or device connected to the web. Every country has its own unique number sequence in the IP addresses of devices being operated from within it.
Websites can see the IP addresses of users visiting their site and can bar the IPs of certain countries from access due to copyright issues. For instance, you can only access BBC iPlayer and Channel 4 if you have a UK IP address.
As such, if you need to access British local content, you will need a way to change IP address to UK. In this article, I will explain how to get a UK IP address using different methods and describe the pros and cons of each.
So, how do I get a British IP address?
There are a number of methods you can use for this purpose. In time, I will describe each of these methods, though particular focus will be given to the use of VPN for getting an IP address from the UK. This is because, I don’t know about you guys, but I have a thing for solutions that are effective without being too complicated.
So, when it comes to getting a British IP in the quickest and simplest possible way, then a VPN is what you’re looking for.
A VPN (Virtual Private Network) basically works by rerouting your traffic from its natural device-to-web server path through a maze of private “tunnels” of sorts. Although the end destination is still the website you want to access, your data moves through a more secure and well-encrypted route than it otherwise would.
To connect to a UK IP address with a VPN, here is what you need to do:
- Subscribe to a reputed VPN service that offers UK servers. I would recommend PureVPN for this.
- Install the app on your device.
- Open the app and connect to a server located in the UK.
- After successful connection, your IP will change to the UK.
- Access websites and services in local Britain with zero restrictions!
Now this will be probably lead you to the next question…
What is the best way to Accessing British Content?
If you have already been searching for a VPN, you will find that the industry is filled with dozens of providers. Deciding the best out of the lot can be quite difficult with so many options available. Having tested more than 100 VPN providers on this website, there is one VPN service that stands out specifically for getting a UK IP address
The VPN I’m talking about is PureVPN.
PureVPN is one of the pioneering providers in the VPN industry. Based in Hong-Kong, the service started in 2007 and has customers located all over the world. The server network includes more than 2,000 servers which cover more than 140 countries. This is one of the greatest aspects of the service, many VPN providers have only a limited geographical reach.
Apart from the vastness of its server network, PureVPN also uses strong encryption protocols. It uses AES 256 bit encryption to protect user data from the hacking attempts of malicious users. As such, PureVPN gives you a global license to roam the Internet with the security of advanced algorithms and protocol and is the best UK VPN you can have.
Pros of PureVPN
- Provides more than 2,000 servers in over 140 countries
- Strong encryption protocols (AES 256 bit)
- 31-day money-back refund policy
Cons of PureVPN
- Occasional connection problems
What about free VPN Services?
The VPN industry today consists of more than 800 providers. Many of these providers offer paid subscription-based services. However, quite a few of the VPN are available for free. These services can be dangerous for the device you are using the VPN client on, as well as for your data.
Free VPN providers often turn the consumer into a product for sale in order to make profit. As such, they might fill your device with ads or collect your data for sale to ad agencies or third-party entities. Not only this, free VPN only offer a basic set of features and a small server list. A free UK IP address is therefore difficult to get, since many providers only offer UK servers in their paid versions.
For all these reasons, it is generally a bad idea to get a free VPN service. I strongly recommend you to try a premium VPN for own safety and satisfaction.
Benefits of a UK IP Address
The United Kingdom respects the right of citizens to freedom of expression where censorship on online platforms is a rare phenomenon. The large majority of people in the UK enjoy access to Internet. Thus, the cyberspace in the UK is one of the freest in the whole world, which is why a UK IP address is so desirable to countries less blessed in this respect.
States such as China, UAE, and Russia have repressive laws with rampant censorship on content of political or a religious nature. For citizens in these countries, a British IP can make the Internet much more open with a variety of services becoming available that are otherwise blocked.
Some of the immediate benefits of a British IP address are:
Accessing Restricted Content
Copyrights and licensing agreements often impose restrictions on the availability of content in foreign regions. The same is true in the UK where several streaming services, websites, and channels are geo-restricted abroad. You will only be able to access BBC iPlayer, ITV, Netflix UK etc. if you use UK IP address.
Achieving Online Anonymity
In countries where government surveillance and spying is a threat to privacy of citizen and where people are persecuted for expressing themselves, online anonymity is extremely important. If you are located in Russia, for instance, but are surfing the web with a UK IP address, you can greatly enhance your security and privacy on the Internet.
Protecting Sensitive Data
Since using an IP different from your native country spoofs your location, it becomes exceedingly difficult for hackers or agencies to track your activities and identify you online. Without any idea as to your real identity, your sensitive information attains a much higher safety through if you are using a foreign IP address, such as a British one.
UK DNS Server
As I elaborated earlier in this post, the IP address is your digital identifier on the web. It is possible to learn all details from country of origin to the name of the specific person associated with an IP. VPNs enhance your privacy by changing your visible IP address. This makes it almost impossible for anyone to guess your actual location and identity through the changed IP.
However, IP is not the only piece of information that is used to identify users on the Internet. The DNS (Domain Name System) is used in association with the IP to identify a user’s location. This is why websites verify your DNS server and IP address to make sure you are present in a country where the website is supposed to be accessible.
If your DNS server and IP address are not from the same country, then the website automatically blocks access. This is why a VPN should have DNS leak protection as well. PureVPN is known for its strong security which is able to successful protect your DNS from leaking. This effectively enables you to bypass geo-restrictions with minimal likelihood of your DNS or real IP leaking on the regular Internet.
Therefore, you should only use premium and reputed VPN providers as these provide advanced security and encryption methods for your maximum protection.
Other Ways to obtain IP address from the UK
Other than a VPN, there are other methods you can use to a get a British IP address. One of the most common ways is to use proxy servers. This method will allow you to bypass geo-restrictions, however, it offers poor speed and security. As such, this is not a recommended option, but if you are still interested, then the best free proxy server UK website that I have come across is VPNBook.com.
SmartDNS is another method you can use. This service changes your apparent DNS in order to spoof your location and allow you access to blocked websites. Unfortunately, it does not offer the encryption and security that VPNs are so effective in providing.
Lastly, you can use Tor as another free service for gaining access to UK’s restricted websites. This service emphasizes privacy more than anything else. I would recommend Tor if you are interested in keeping your identity secure while blogging and gaining access to barred websites. However, for any task that requires fast speeds such as torrenting and streaming, Tor fails to deliver the speeds that VPNs are known for.
So these are your main options to unblock British websites from abroad. While each of them have their respective pros and cons, a VPN covers all the bases necessary for safe browsing of the Internet at high speeds. Nonetheless, you can check out these other options as well to see for yourself which works best for you.
Getting a UK IP address is fairly simple. The question is, how well can you protect your IP once you have obtained it? The answer depends on the purpose you wish to get a UK IP for. If privacy is the priority, Tor can do the job for you. If speed is your priority then SmartDNS can be enough. However, if you need both speed and privacy, then a VPN is your best bet.
I hope I answered your main queries in this blog. Got any more questions or feedback? I’ll be waiting for your comments below!