How to Find Someone’s IP Address: Your Expert Guide
Evelyn Sanderson - August 1, 2022
Looking up someone’s IP address can seem confusing to many individuals, especially if you’ve never needed to try and locate this information before. Fortunately, there are a few easy ways to find someone’s IP address that don’t take too much time to complete.
We’ll take you through each method, plus some information on IP addresses in general and the possible benefits of knowing someone’s IP address.
What Is an IP Address Anyway?
The ‘IP’ in ‘IP address’ stands for ‘Internet Protocol’ and adheres to the set of rules governing the communication of data across the internet. IP addresses are assigned to every device that uses a network; it allows location and communication data to be sent and received, effectively allowing devices to function on the internet and differentiating between computers (or other devices), routers, and websites.
Your IP address will be a set of numbers separated by periods; the address is typically broken up into four sets of numbers. The full range of IP addresses goes from 0.0.0.0 to 255.255.255.255. Every IP address is mathematically calculated and monitored by the non-profit organization ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers).
There are several different types of IP addresses, including consumer, private, and public, and you can read more about how IP addresses work here.
Why Lookup Someone’s IP Address?
There are several reasons you may want to know someone’s IP address. After all, once you know an IP, you can pinpoint that address’s general location, track where your data is being sent to, or blacklist a device from accessing your Wi-Fi or other network settings.
Many companies even use the information provided by IP addresses to better target advertising or compile data on customers. In contrast, individuals may want to look up IP addresses to protect their own data better or ensure that their data is being sent to the correct places.
It is important to note that the steps we list before for finding an IP address will likely not give you the location of the IP address down to a specific street—like in detective shows or spy movies. Most IP address lookup tools will only give you a general location, as this is better for the privacy of anyone involved. You’re not likely to get the kind of detailed information you can get with a reverse phone lookup, for instance.
You should also note that IP address information may be inaccurate if the IP address you are looking for is shielded by a VPN.
The Easiest Ways to Find Someone’s IP Address
When looking up someone’s IP address, you can use a few different methods. We’ve listed the easiest ones below so that you can get started finding this important information for yourself.
Use Email Headers
One of the best, most intuitive ways to find someone’s IP address is to use the email header of an email that they sent to you. This method will work with any email server, as they all provide the sender’s metadata if you know where to look. However, keep in mind that sometimes this data can be falsified or otherwise hidden, so take your findings with a grain of salt and be sure to double-check them.
- Open an email message from the sender you are trying to find the IP address of and look for the drop-down menu. This will typically be three dots near the message’s top, bottom, or corner.
- Click on the drop-down menu and find the option that says something like ‘view original’ or ‘view raw email.’ The specific wording depends on the email server that you are using.
- Scroll down the data until you find a section that reads ‘received from code’ or something similar. Multiple IP addresses will be located here; select the most recent code. This IP address is likely the one you are looking for.
Once you have found the IP address of the email’s sender, you can check it for authenticity or run it through an IP lookup took to figure out more information. With more information about the IP address, you can even use a people search tool to get a detailed report on the sender, you can even perform a reverse email lookup by simply searching their email address.
Also, if you’re concerned about people who are emailing you, you’ll want to become familiar with email scams so that you’ll best know how to protect yourself.
Use Command Prompt
Another easy tool to use to find IP addresses is the command prompt function on your computer. Most devices have this option built-in, and you can use it to find the IP address of any website you use. This is especially helpful if you want to make sure that the data you input to certain websites is going to the right place.
- Open up your computer’s start menu and type ‘cmd’ in the search bar. The option to open up the command prompt function should appear. Click on this to run the command prompt.
- Once the command prompt is open, type ‘ping’ followed by the URL of the website that you are trying to find the IP address of. We recommend copying and pasting the URL of the website so as to ensure there are no typos and that all information is accurate.
- After the ping brings back the IP address of the website, you can run the ‘tracert’ command on the IP address to figure out the locations that the data is being sent through. Take the IP address listed after ‘ping statistics’ and copy it. Then, type ‘tracert’ followed by the IP address.
- The resulting information after running the ‘tracert’ command will be all the locations that your data is going through when connecting to the URL of that specific website. You can copy these IP addresses and input them into an IP address lookup tool for more information or copy them to verify their authenticity with another tool.
You may also be able to use the command prompt function to troubleshoot why data is not being sent to the correct IP address or to understand further how to protect their device from having data stolen. More information on this process can be found here.
Use an IP Lookup Tool
Using an IP lookup tool isn’t typically the first step in finding someone’s IP address. For these tools to work, you will need to know the IP address you are searching for either by previous knowledge or by using one of the two methods above. Once you have the IP address you want more information about, you can plug it into the IP lookup tool and figure out information such as the location of the IP address, the host name, and any services run through that IP address.
The most popular IP lookup tools are whatismyipaddress.com and whatismyip.com. Both of these services can give you information compiled from third-party tools on the IP address that you are searching; keep in mind this data may be outdated or not entirely accurate due to the ever-changing nature of the internet and the reliability of third-party collection tools.
Other Vital Information to Know
Looking up someone’s IP address can give you important information about their location and where your data is being sent, but sometimes you need more information than that. Cases like these are where Information.com steps in.
Their lookup tools can help you to locate information that helps you in your daily life. By searching just a name, phone number, or email address, you can find old family and friends, discover the identity of those who have called you, find information on yourself or others, and run background checks on those living around you or interacting with your loved ones.
When combined with IP address lookups, the information discovered on information.com can tell you everything you need to know to stay informed about individuals around you, find long-lost relatives, and protect your loved ones from potential threats.
Completing Your IP Address Search
Finding someone’s IP address can seem like a difficult hacker-level feat, but this process doesn’t need to be that complicated. As long as you make sure to follow our steps, you’ll be able to locate someone’s IP address easily.
What you do with that information is up to you; you can use it to track where your data is being sent, block a sender from accessing your Wi-Fi or other networks, or verify the location of a sender’s IP address. Just remember when using IP lookup tools and other IP verification information that most data is collected by third-party websites and has a chance of being inaccurate.
You should also keep in mind that Information.com is a prime source of information when it comes to looking up family and friends, running background checks, and checking caller identities. So, if more questions arise after finding someone’s IP address, don’t hesitate to use Information.com to gain all of the knowledge you need to protect your information and stay informed.