The rapidly transforming digital world has brought numerous opportunities for people online. You can access valuable information to help your business thrive in the highly competitive ecommerce world. As for random internet users, they can utilize online data for personal and professional purposes.
However, the highly advanced technologies and surging internet popularity also present various challenges. Studies show that the number of cyberattacks is increasing. Given that, your privacy is at risk. A proxy service, however, offers a reliable way to keep your online data safe and stay anonymous while surfing the Internet.
What Is a Proxy Server?
A proxy server is a service people connect to through their web browsers. All your web traffic routes through the server soon after your device forms a stable connection with a proxy service. Your web traffic generally goes straight to the website you visit. However, a proxy server stands between you and the internet, acting as an intermediary. So, the initial traffic that otherwise goes directly now passes through a proxy server and then the internet.
How Does It Work?
Proxies stand between the user and the resource they’re trying to access. When you send a request via proxy, it forwards it and sends the results back to you. So, regardless of the proxy type, the working principle remains the same. Note that proxies pass your traffic through an encrypted channel. Instead, they only request resources based on your commands. Nonetheless, some proxies help encrypt your web traffic, masking it from your ISP. On the flip side, the proxy service owner might have access to your data. So, you’d need to trust them for your privacy and safety.
Proxies also help you stay anonymous by changing your IP address. So, you can surf the internet anonymously because they trick the web into thinking the traffic is coming from another country. Another perk of using proxies is that you can access restricted websites. Since the web fails to detect your physical location – when you’re using a proxy – it allows you to land it.
Different Types of Proxies
Proxies help filter content, boost online security, and bypass censorship. But, you have multiple options to choose from. Some popular proxy types include the following.
Residential proxies take security to the next level because their IP address is from real, physical devices. Web servers see them as average users, making it impossible to detect them. You can use this to access desired online data easily. For instance, it helps you avoid annoying geo-restrictions.
These proxies provide artificial IP addresses created at data centers. A single proxy server can make numerous data center proxies. However, they all share a similar IP subnetwork. This implies that data center proxy groups may look identical. As such, they compromise privacy and are prone to blocks. Their speed, however, is impeccable, which is a plus.
Anonymous proxies send requests without revealing the client’s information. This implies that these proxies connect to the servers by themselves. If you seek greater anonymity online, anonymous proxies offer a reliable way to achieve that. They hide your location by masking your IP address and mediating your requests.
Several clients can use shared proxies at a given time. They are generally the most cost-effective proxies out there for the right reasons. Numerous clients can split the price and use more proxies for the same cost. They, however, need a robust network design because they have to entertain numerous connection requests at a given time. As far as the speed is concerned, it depends on the load-balancers, not the number of users using it.
Public proxies are readily available on the internet. Anyone can download them and connect to their network. This makes them the most unreliable and unsafe proxies. In fact, netizens believe most of them are set up by governmental organizations and hackers to access your private data. Nonetheless, many people still use them because they are free.
Rotating proxy servers randomly alters your IP address, making the user requests less detectable. While they provide a fair amount of privacy, it isn’t as good as residential proxies – that do not share the subnetwork.
Transparent proxy servers obstruct user activity for a target site. For instance, someone browsing through Wikipedia may think they are viewing the original article. In reality, it is being presented to them through a transparent proxy. So, they authenticate you on public networks and other servers.
They are the most widely used proxy servers. They are generally utilized to send requests from a protected network. People typically use them to enhance internal network security because they filter the information exchange between users and target websites.
Which Proxy Type Is Best to Protect Privacy and Stay Anonymous?
Free proxies tempt users the most. However, they are not ideal, given that they minimize your privacy. In fact, your data is at risk using free-of-charge services. That said, residential and rotating proxies can be your safest bet. The former provides real IP addresses and doesn’t share the same subnetwork. The latter constantly changes your IP address, boosting security. If, however, you seek greater online security, consider investing in residential proxies because they do not share the subnetwork, unlike rotating proxies.
Privacy is a valuable commodity. Everybody seeks to protect their online activity and data. Luckily, a proxy service allows you to stay anonymous and keep your information private. However, make sure you opt for a proxy type that lives up to your expectations in terms of security. A free proxy, of course, won’t help at this point.
Photo credit: The feature image has been done by London Deposit.