Recently I had someone ask me a question I wanted to share with you. They asked me why in the heck their IP address appeared to be coming from the other side of the country? Honestly, I can understand why this would freak someone out! Imagine not understanding what is going on as you do an check only to see the IP looking odd. Then you run a speed test and learn you’re suddenly based in another region of the country. I mean come on, that is just going to feel weird to the uninformed.

What’s actually happening?

So what’s the deal with appearing as if you’re in locations where you’re really not? Well basically what happens is that you’re simply being assigned an IP address that is still registered as being held in another location. Where things get weird is that sometimes these IP addresses  are purchased in bulk and haven’t been re-registered quite yet. So if Comcast buys an IP block from someone, the IPs may still appear as if they’re located in the original location! You can see how messy buying and selling IPv4 addresses has become. Clearly, we’re overdue for something a little cleaner.

Why Is My IP Address From Another State?
Photo by Wesley Fryer

Does this hurt my Internet speed?

To the surprise of most people, no, it’s just fine.  This type of IP registration snafu will not affect your speed whatsoever. Remember, you’re still located where you really are, and the IP number leased to you for the duration is just that: a number. Just remember that when you’re doing speed tests that you will likely want to take this into account as your real destination and the IP address registered location vary. Not a big deal either way, I wouldn’t sweat it.

Over the course of time, the same leased IP address will eventually reflect the correct location. Either that or you’ll have renewed the IP lease with a new address, thus making this a moot point.