What Is a Static IP Address?

In this article, we'll explain what the static IP address is all about and how it compares to a dynamic IP address...

Static IP Address

As you probably already know, an IP address is a unique series of numbers that identifies each device on the Internet. Or on a local network.

We distinguish between private and public addresses, the former of which is assigned to your device to communicate with others within your internal network and isn’t seen outside of it.

On the other hand, the public IP address is assigned by your Internet Service Provider (ISP) and it’s used to identify you on the internet so that other devices can communicate with you.

This public IP address can be either dynamic or static, and here we’re going to explain the difference between the two. Read on for details….

Dynamic IP address explained

As its name says, a dynamic IP address changes regularly and automatically. Most users get a dynamic IP address, which typically changes every 24 hours. Also, it will likely change every time you reset your router.

Once you get the new IP address, your previous IP address is often assigned to a different user. ISPs must do this as they have a limited number of IP addresses.

But while dynamic IP addresses are harder to trace, they can still lead to identifying users as it is known which ISPs own which IP addresses (IP ranges). So, even with a dynamic IP address – a website you’re visiting will have a general idea of your location (as IP addresses are commonly organized around location).

Except, that is, if you’re getting a dynamic IP address from a VPN. This way, no one will be able to track you down and as a result – you won’t have to deal with pesky (and “personalized”) ads.

Static or dedicated IP address explained

A static IP address, also known as a dedicated IP address, doesn’t change and remains consistent. Most users don’t need a static IP address except if they need it for business purposes.

For instance, your company will whitelist a certain number of IP addresses to allow access to the company’s servers. If this is the case, you will need a static IP address.

Here too a good VPN can help as many of these are offering static IP addresses which you can then share with your company’s admins and ask them to whitelist you for required access to the network’s resources.

Also, with a static IP address, you are able to run your own server and allow others to connect to your device for accessing the services you provide.

Can your IP address travel with you?

If you’re getting an IP address from a VPN service, the answer is YES – it could travel with you if you want to. But, you don’t have to always have the same IP address. Once you’re done with your business, you can connect to some other (VPN) server to get a new (dynamic) IP address.

Or, you may get a different static/dedicated IP address for other purposes. Which brings us to the next question…

Should you use a dynamic or static IP address?

Most users are better off with a dynamic IP address except when they need a static IP address for business purposes. With a VPN, you get to choose between the two different IP address types and switch between them during the day. When you need a static IP address, turn that feature on and then later — once you’re done with work (for instance) — just connect to a different server and get a dynamic IP address.

Also, it is worth adding that static IP addresses come with a price tag of at least a few dollars per month. In that sense, you should determine for yourself — based on your needs — whether you need that extra cost.

The bottom line is that a VPN offers you freedom to choose between a static and dynamic IP address, while also protecting your privacy along the way. It is our belief that everyone should be using a VPN these days; and in order to get started, hop over to our page with Best of the Best VPNs and take it from there.