Loopback Address OR

Loopback Address OR

A loopback address is an IP address which is specifically  This is the address of the same machine that a technician is working on.  Using the loopback interface protocol the technicians that are working on or testing can run a software program without interference from hardware or the network.

This is commonly used for pranks as well.  For students learning how to trouble shoot systems, a teacher will ask them to search the for any problems.

The issue with this to the student is that there would not be any issues because they would not be technically running any software programs.  It would just set the trouble shooter to run on a loop with no end hence confusing the student.  Even though it would confuse the student, it would teach the student about the loopback address.

There was also a prank that was circulating the internet a few years ago where a radio host prank called a woman and claimed that someone at her home was searching for illegal materials and that the police had been informed and that she needed to type in a few things into her computer in order to prevent the person from using her network to search the internet for such things.

The woman being naïve enough to believe what the man was saying, proceeded to follow the man’s instructions.  The series of instructions included the woman opening the command prompt window and typing in a series of characters and numbers.  Included in these numbers was the loop back address  In the end the instructions that the radio host gave the woman totally wiped her hard drive clean.

Even though this loopback address is useful for trouble shooting and debugging software that is in development, and is a secure means of doing so there are security issues that can be major if you are not careful.