Every computer that is connected to the internet has an internet service provider and each provider is assigned a unique number called an IP or internet protocol address. An IP address is made up of four one, two, or three digit numbers that are separated by periods (188.8.131.52). Each country and region has its own unique IP address number set.
Because IP addresses are assigned to internet service providers based on their region, they can be used to identify the country and region where a computer using the ISP is connecting from. An IP address can be used to determine a user's general location with a varying degree of accuracy from the general region in a country to the street of a city. An IP locator program allows you to see the location of any given IP address.
The numbers of an IP address can be hard to remember which is why IP addresses can be assigned a host name which is usually a name that describes the region and business name of the internet service provider. Internet service providers used to assign one IP address to each user they provided services for. This type of IP address allotment is referred to as static IP addresses because each user had a specific IP address that did not change. However, because the number of IP addresses are limited internet service providers started issuing them in a dynamic fashion from a group of available IP addresses as user activity increased. These dynamic IP addresses change each time a user connects to the internet and reflects the region where the internet service provider is located. Using an IP locator to find the location of a person using a dynamic IP address will turn up the location of the internet service provider and not the actual user.
There are many IP lookup tools and IP locators available online. They provide information such as the hostname, country, and region of the internet service provider and any other information commercially available about the IP address.