Geo-blocking and How To Get Around It
The internet is not as infinite as we’d like because virtual walls prevent access to certain content or websites. Geo-blocking is an internet fencing technique restricting access to content based on a user’s location.
Geo-blocking’s primary goal is to protect licensed or copyrighted content. Streaming sites like Netflix and Amazon Prime enforce geo-restriction because of licensing agreements that differ according to country. It is a legally accepted practice that some companies use for business reasons like implementing dynamic pricing.
How Can You Bypass Geo-blocking?
Geo-blocking utilizes tracking and geolocation technology to identify an internet user’s IP address. If your IP ties to a region blocked by a website, what happens is a restriction of access.
The geo-blocking message “This content is not available in your country” can be frustrating to see, but that doesn’t mean a hopeless situation. Geo-blocking bypassing techniques, such as the Tor Browser, VPNs, smart DNS, and proxy servers, exist to ensure the internet remains an infinite space. Let’s explore these methods for hiding IP addresses to access geo-restricted content.
Also read: IP Geolocation Database Definition
Virtual Private Network (VPN)
A VPN is the most effective way to bypass geo-blocking privately. Since the restriction works by identifying an internet user’s IP address, a VPN masks your actual IP and replaces it with one based in a geo-approved country. VPN also encrypts your internet connection to keep your data private.
VPNs are easy to set up and use. Once a user connects to a preferred server, the traffic will route to and from that server’s location. However, use VPNs with advanced security features and encryption protocols to maintain anonymity. A good VPN offers high connection speeds and military-grade encryption enough to unblock restricted websites, avoid price discrimination, and increase online privacy.
A proxy server provides a gateway between internet users and the internet. Like VPNs, proxy servers effectively bypass geo-blocking by using different IP addresses. All the internet traffic flows through the proxy server, guaranteeing you privacy and security.
Proxy servers don’t encrypt data, but don’t worry – high-quality residential proxies can help reduce associated vulnerabilities. BestProxyFinder enables you to find a proxy provider that guarantees top-notch firewall and network data filtering, data caching, and network connection sharing to privately and safely bypass geo-blocking.
The Tor (also known as The Onion Router) Browser is an inexpensive and easy method of bypassing geo-restrictions. It anonymizes your website traffic using the Tor network. Like other regular browsers, such as Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Safari, you can use the Tor Browser to access regular websites. That’s not all – it also allows access to special .onion sites solely available on the Tor network. This browser is compatible with Linux, Windows, Mac, and smartphones.
The Tor Browser encrypts and transmits internet data through different servers to ensure privacy and anonymity. However, since traffic flows through various servers, it tends to slow the internet connection. In addition, large parts of the Tor network have seen recent breaches.
Also read: 4 Best Browsers for Privacy
Smart DNS and DNS Changer
Smart DNS is specifically designed to bypass geo-blocking without additional security layers. It works by rerouting Domain Name System (DNS) requests through a remote server. Unlike a VPN, smart DNS doesn’t hide your IP address or encrypt your internet traffic. Instead, it conceals your DNS address, making it possible to access geo-restricted content. Many VPN providers offer smart DNS as an additional feature, but users cannot use both tools concurrently.
On the other hand, a DNS changer quickly changes your DNS server to optimize connections and improve internet speeds. Both smart DNS and DNS changers are suitable for masking locations. Unfortunately, the former doesn’t boast security features, leaving users vulnerable to privacy intrusions and online tracking.
Websites commonly use geo-restrictions to enforce legal contracts and protect copyrighted content. Even though geo-blocking is a legal practice, there are legitimate reasons to bypass it. Since some sites use geo-blocking for the wrong reasons, such as dynamic pricing, finding ways to get around location restrictions is justified.
Once you master the art of hiding your location, you’ll get better deals, avoid tracking, and be able to maximize your internet experience. Get ready to bid the annoying “This content is not available in your country” message goodbye.