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A proxy server or proxy is any hardware or software that acts as a gateway between a user’s computer and web servers. This means that all incoming and outgoing traffic must pass through this gateway. But the proxy not only acts as a gateway but also anonymizes the outgoing web requests by hiding their real IP address. Instead, it associates a different address. Generally, IPs store information such as the location and your internet service provider’s name but still internet is safe. For this reason, proxies prevent websites from getting ahold of data they can subsequently use to create your online persona as part of web tracking for marketing purposes, for example.
Types of Proxies
There are several types of proxies, including:
- Residential proxies
- Datacenter proxies
- Mobile proxies
- Shared proxies
- Dedicated or private proxies
- Rotating proxies
- Sticky proxies
- Forward proxies
- Reverse proxies
- Transparent proxies
Each proxy type has attributes that set it apart from other proxies. For instance, residential proxies assign residential IP addresses (associated with internet service providers), datacenter proxies assign datacenter IP addresses (linked to data centers), and mobile proxies assign IP addresses that belong to telecommunication companies.
Similarly, private proxies assign a unique IP address to only one user, while shared proxies assign multiple users the same IP address. What’s more, rotating proxies periodically change the assigned IP address, whereas sticky proxies maintain the same IP throughout the browsing session or until the user manually requests a new IP address.
It is worth noting that residential, datacenter, or mobile proxies can be private or shared. They can also be rotating or sticky. As such, it is not uncommon for you to see descriptions such as a private datacenter or shared datacenter proxy. At the same time, you might also encounter terms like rotating residential proxies or sticky residential proxies. Such proxy types carry the attributes of each proxy in their name. For context, a private datacenter proxy assigns a datacenter IP address to only one user.
Benefits of Private Proxies
Indeed, private proxies offer numerous advantages over other proxy types. In this section, we will look at the benefits based on a number of parameters, namely the assigned IP, detectability of the proxy, performance, security, cost, and more. Let’s get started.
1. IP Bans and Reliability
Private proxies assign each user a unique IP address. This means that no two requests from two different computers connected through this proxy type will bear the same IP. As a result, private proxies prevent IP bans because the user has complete control over the traffic volume associated with the address. This makes dedicated proxies highly reliable.
In contrast, shared proxies assign the same IP address to multiple users. This means that traffic from multiple sources is routed through the same proxy infrastructure. As a result, none of the users fully control what is sent. This can often lead to unusual network activity from a given IP, leading to IP blocking. As a result, shared proxies are largely unreliable.
Private or dedicated proxies are not as easy to detect as shared proxies. The undetectability stems from the fact that the user controls the traffic volume. As such, they can choose the number of requests to send within a particular time frame.
In contrast, users of shared proxies do not have the luxury of determining the volume of requests sent at a time. This role is delegated among multiple users. If the number of requests exceeds a certain threshold, websites can block access by displaying the CAPTCHA code citing unusual network activity.
Dedicated proxies are more expensive than shared proxies.
Private proxies only route traffic from one user, meaning this user is allocated the entire bandwidth. This offers unique advantages: it boosts performance and guarantees high-speed connection throughout. In contrast, users of shared proxies are allotted the same network infrastructure. Unfortunately, this often leads to low connection speeds, especially when multiple requests are sent simultaneously.
5. Privacy and Security
Private proxies offer an unmatched level of privacy and security. Firstly, allowing only one user at a time reduces the chances of eavesdropping attacks. Secondly, as they are undetectable, they ensure the user browses anonymously for as long as they want without worrying about getting flagged or blocked.
On the other hand, shared proxies do not guarantee security. This is because they allocate the same infrastructure to multiple users, some of whom may have malicious intent and possess the technical know-how to execute nefarious actions. To put it more concisely, some shared proxies increase the risk of cyberattacks, such as eavesdropping attacks. This is not the case, however, with shared proxies that come from reputable providers. Shared Datacenter Proxies, for example, is still a viable solution.
Private proxies boast reliability, undetectability, privacy, security, and performance. This is because they assign a unique IP address to only one person. As a result, the person controls the number of requests routed through the proxy. Check out this article to delve more into the topic of private proxies.