Planning to use a torrent? You’ll need to provide an IP address as part of your required “digital footprint.” Torrent systems need your IP address in order to grant you access to the films, music and digital books that you want to access, and your user peers can see it too in order to share content.
Provide – then mask
Once provided, you can then use a VPN service to mask your IP. Why? Because BitTorrent clients can’t guarantee your anonymity when you torrent. Once you have masked your IP, you can check it to ensure that your VPN service is working properly and that your true IP address is hidden for anonymity and to preserve your online privacy.
With that in mind, read further for our guide on:
- How to check your torrent IP address quickly and easily
- How to then hide it using your VPN service.
Our view on torrenting
Remember, we’re not here to support illegal online activities. Although torrenting can be entirely legal in some contexts, there are other instances where it will infringe copyright laws. Make sure you are clear on what you are doing and where you stand before you begin to use a torrent website.
What is an IP address?
Your IP address will use a unique number to identify your specific location line. It’s the digital equivalent of a postal address, and it’s assigned to you as an internet user by your ISP. Your IP address is shared across any device linked on your home network to the connection.
The key thing to know here, however, is that your IP address can be seen publicly, and you are likely to want to preserve your anonymity when torrenting. This means that every peer on a torrent website – and the website owners themselves – can see your IP address. Of course, they need to in order to route data to your device. However, if you are a torrent user, it’s important to mask your IP with a VPN.
Masking your IP
Your chosen Virtual Private Network, or VPN, will let you change your IP address by switching from your publicly visible default one, through to an anonymous server. It effectively provides a middleman service.
Any website that is tracking you – such as Facebook or Google, as well as other torrent users, then just see the masking IP that your VPN provides, rather than the genuine one allocated through your ISP.
How to check torrent IP addresses
The good news is that you can check your torrent IP simply and rapidly in order to see if your masking service is in place. By doing so, you’ll be able to carry out a quick sense-check that your VPN service is operating as it should and without issues.
You check your torrent at a website that adds a mini magnet link to your torrent service of choice. From there you can just carry out a quick click to verify your torrent IP address.
To do this:
- Go to an IP check website (our choices are below)
To check torrent IP addresses, go to a website such as IP Magnet or DOILeak. IPMagnet is the fastest IP check service but DOILeak offers the most detail.
- Look for the Magnet link and click on it to download it. Then, open it with your chosen torrent service.
- Wait for a few seconds and then check your torrent IP address, as well as your browser’s IP address. These will allow you to confirm whether everything is working as you expected.
- To easily check your torrent IP in future, add your chosen IP tracking website to your download list and then just choose ‘trackers’ for a rapid bookmark to it.
IP check websites to use
These are some of our favourite check torrent IP websites:
- PMagnet Torrent IP Check – the fastest of the IP torrent checker websites and beautifully simple to use with plenty of information on offer for users. It will show your IP location, your DNS server, your browser and more.
- DOILEAK – this is a mobile optimized website with simple flat styling and a simple user interface. Use it to find out whether you are inadvertently sharing any sensitive data as you browse. This kind of data leakage is basically any type of information that can be used to trace back to you and to reveal your identity. The system will run an IP address location check in order to test any regular leaks. It can also check out any IP leaks on your torrent. This is useful whether you use a proxy or VPN.
- CBCDN – this offers the IPMagnet tool, again with an intuitive interface and the ability to find out your IP address, server, browser and location as well as to flag up any possible data leakages that could allow your identity to be revealed.
- AirVPN IPLeak – this is an extremely solid website and helps to easily assess the security and safety of VPNs. It’s not an open source system but it does show a huge amount of information about the services that are widely available for IP testing, from DNS or IP leak tests through to Mime, Plugins and Google+ accounts.
…And one to possibly avoid?
We are less keen to recommend TorGuard as it has an awful lot of advertising and doesn’t reveal your IP history.
How to use IP check websites
To check torrent IP addresses, simply find the download link and select it to open within your torrent server. (IPLeak and IPMagnet offer you magnet links directly.) Because the torrent monitors your IP it will never download the magnet. Then, you can use the client to see your IP or continue to monitor it as you use the website.
The advantage of website monitoring
As you check your torrent IP, you can also keep an eye on your IP history. This will flag up quickly if any issues are spotted, or if there are possible discrepancies that you might wish to investigate further. Additionally, if your VPN stops working entirely for any reason, it will let you know. Last but not least, you can identify your torrent client.
How to hide your Torrent IP
Once you’ve identified your IP you can enhance your security by hiding it. It’s well worth choosing a VPN system to torrent content, as it will help to protect you from the various security issues that can take place.
For example, you can conceal your torrent usage from your ISP and retain your anonymity online with a VPN. Of course, you must make sure your IP address is hidden as you download content online, so you must constantly keep an eye on your IP by using your BitTorrent provider of choice.
There are various tools available to help the millions of Torrent users to check and maintain their VPN or proxy connection and safeguard their anonymity and security when online. Your ability to remain private while torrenting is important and certainly worth actively maintaining.
Remember to remain secure on torrent websites by choosing the best VPN service that support torrenting; something we have covered extensively in another linked guide to help you make the most of your safe and private torrent experience.