This post was written by Danny Carpenter, the creator of CheckMyTorrentIp, an excellent torrent tool.
If you’re a BitTorrent user who subscribes to anonymizing services like VPNs or proxies, how do you verify your IP address is always hidden? If you’re using a web browser to check your BitTorrent IP address, this may leave you exposed in the long run.
How to check my torrent IP?
CheckMyTorrentIp offers a novel approach to accurately monitoring your IP; it’s a torrent tracker that hands out a legal torrent to each user. Because no one else has your torrent, the CheckMyTorrentIp tracker can monitor and display your BitTorrent IP address directly in your torrent software:
Your IP history is also available on the site, and you can delete your data with a single click:
And since there are 0 seeders, you don’t download anything else so you can leave the torrent active for as long as you wish.
Why is checking your IP address with a web browser not good enough?
For starters, you can’t check your IP continuously all day long, and if you’re using a proxy or firewall, your torrent software may use a different IP address then your browser.
There are various ways your IP address can leak. VPNs all suffer from the same weakness, the connection will drop at some point, and this may expose your personal IP address. Unless you’re next to your PC when this happens, you may not even realize this is occurring.
With proxies, they can be incorrectly configured or unknowingly unset, and if you’ve left DHT and UPnP turned on, your personal IP address will leak even if your proxy is configured correctly. Another common way is if you have other people using your PC.
They may not be familiar with your setup and inadvertently expose your connection. Another way is in firewalls that route torrent traffic through a secure connection. The configuration can be faulty or become un-set. Bugs in torrent software and public/private P2P networks can also play a role in exposing your IP address.
The FAQ on CheckMyTorrentIp.com outlines in detail the items above and covers steps you can take to resolve them.
I created CheckMyTorrentIp after my best friend kept asking me to debug his VPN setup. After realizing there didn’t exist a service like this, I slapped together some code and put it online. When it comes to privacy, I believe anything below 100% protection is as good as no protection, and I thank how-to-hide-ip for allowing me to disseminate this helpful tool to a broader audience.
CheckMyTorrentIP alternatives [Update]
Unfortunately, CheckMyTorrentIp download is no longer available. But, there are other online services that you may use to check if your VPN is working:
UpCoil TorrentIP Check
Let us know what you think. How do you check your torrent IP? How do you protect your online privacy?