What is the difference between a VPN and proxy, and why you should care about these differences? Both act as intermediaries between your computer and the Internet by swapping out your IP address for that of the service. A VPN adds encryption to the equation, while a proxy is much simpler to use.
Concealing an IP is important because an IP is tied to the name and location an Internet Service Provider has assigned to you. Hiding your IP address is the most basic thing you can do to protect your online identity, and bypass online blocks.
There are three basic types of proxy servers:.
There are three types of proxy servers available to use.
Without a proxy masking an IP address the identifiable information, such as the near-exact location of the user, are easy to learn.
Particularly dedicated hackers can use an IP address, track it back to an ISP, and learn about who the subscriber is. If anyone with malicious intent has somebody else’s IP, they can easily demand information about the IP address owner from the ISP. A simple copyrights-violation claim, for example, can force an ISP to give up personal data of its subscribers.
One good difference between an ISP and a proxy server is that proxy providers can have their user accounts separated from payment information for total anonymity. For instance, TorGuard‘s payment system is completely independent of their proxy system. In other words, their users’ proxies are not tied to their users’ name, address and other financial information.
Proxies make it possible for users to appear like they’re in a different location than their actual physical location. With a different IP address, proxy users can:
Many good things come from having a new IP address, especially when it comes to appearing as if your computer is in another country.
A proxy can provide protection for its users from the industry that builds IP geolocation databases. The information contained in these databases are collected and sold to anyone interested, and all without the people in them knowing about it. Some databases can even be accessed for free by the public!
IP2Location is an example of a free database that anyone can access by simply downloading it. According to the website, the country of origin and exact geographical location of any IP address can be determined using their database.
One function of a proxy is to cache web pages. It stores pages locally so when a page is requested again, it quickly checks for changes on the live page first before serving the cached page when no changes are apparent.
It saves the unnecessary use of bandwidth and is particularly useful for companies with employees accessing the same web pages multiple times in a day, the company home page being a prime example. These companies may use a proxy provider which also doubles as a VPN provider so they get the best of both worlds, Proxy-N-VPN is an example.
IP address tell websites and apps a great deal about users, and having different IPs available allows users to:
Google explains that any time it receives traffic that looks automated, the user must key in a CAPTCHA image to continue using the service. SEO professionals who check a lot of webpage rankings and do a lot of searches will benefit from having multiple IPs they can use for this reason.
With proxies, people can block cookies and prevent websites from leaving cookies on their devices. People using proxies can protect themselves from data collection for marketing purposes.
Cookies that are saved in computers can be accessed by hackers. By preventing websites from leaving cookies on devices, people who use proxies also can protect themselves from hackers who may use their personal information and steal their identities.
VPNs encrypt all connections to the Internet while they also swap IP addresses, making them the non-technical people’s best shot at achieving 100% anonymity online. They are good for people who use the Internet for a more serious task that requires an additional layer of security. Online journalists and bloggers doing research are a prime example.
There are basically two types of VPNs according to function and VPN security protocols:
These two types of VPNs cover private individuals, and public companies respectively.
With proxies and VPNs, Internet users can browse without fear, secure their real identities, hide online activities, and keep more of their private data private.
These are the kinds of proxies and VPNs that can help you stay safe and anonymous online. These anonymization services are great not just for businesses but also for individuals looking for an added layer of protection.