The concept may be surprising to some, but geo-blocking is a common practice to limit internet access. It’s location-based, which means if you’re from a different country, there is online content that is not available in your region. This is common with streaming sites such as Netflix and YouTube. But in addition to streaming, a traveler abroad may also encounter geo-blocking when accessing news and other important information. So, how do you get around this restriction? The answer is by spoofing your location. 

What is geo-spoofing?

Geo-spoofing, or faking your location is one way to overcome location-based internet restriction. Since APIs today are advanced, it’s easy for a website or search engine to know where you are. Location tags gathered through search engines, for example, include information such as your IP address. To get around this, using a VPN to change your location is the most common geo-spoofing method. 

Using a VPN tunnels data from your device through a private server, which uses a different IP address. Also, it encrypts data and protects your online activity from hackers. 

What are the advantages of geo-spoofing?

One of the most common reasons to consider geo-spoofing is access to restricted content. Since streaming sites are popular these days, faking your location helps maximize your paid subscriptions. This works not only for streaming sites, of course. Anytime you want to download a movie, video, or online content blocked because of your location, geo-spoofing can help. 

In addition to accessing geo-blocked content, another benefit of spoofing your location is increased privacy. Without spoofing, you willingly give your exact address to every site you visit. This makes you more vulnerable to anyone who may want to track your location. Anything from advertisements to pop-ups, all based on your IP address. With increased privacy, you feel more confident that your online activity is secure.

Depending on where you live, geo-spoofing could be useful against surveillance. When traveling abroad, for example, you may not want a foreign government to spy on your activity. Apart from traffic encryption, you also benefit from added security features such as malware protection.

Lastly, geo-spoofing may also help increase your online browsing speed. If you use a VPN to block your location, you’re using a different server that prevents your ISP from downgrading your bandwidth. 

Is geo-spoofing necessary?

Since most people rely on the internet for many things, geo-spoofing does come in handy. It helps improve your experience when using streaming services and gives you another layer of security. But whether it’s essential depends on your needs.

Do consider how much time you spend on specific online activities. Of course, someone who spends hours each day streaming, playing games, or downloading content will need geo-spoofing. On the other hand, someone who occasionally browses or checks emails may not. Nevertheless, the option to fake your IP address could be useful if you plan to travel abroad

In conclusion, your location should not restrict or prevent you from accessing geo-blocked content. Geo-spoofing is the ideal workaround and is considered legal if you’re using a VPN connection. 

Photo by Sergey Zolkin on Unsplash

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