Unlocking the Power of Private Proxies for Online Work: Enhancing Your Online Security and Productivity
Everybody knows the basics of how to use the internet – you open a browser, enter a URL, and visit wanted websites. You’re probably doing it right now while reading this article. But the World Wide Web has much more to more to offer if you can unlock its full potential.
These efforts include overcoming the constant data collection, access restrictions, and tracking imposed by governments and corporations. That’s where various privacy tools come into play, and the most efficient one is private proxy servers. This article will explain all you need to know to start using one.
The role of IP address in online identification
We must start by understanding how devices identify each other online. At the most basic level, devices send data packets with requests when communicating. Within these requests for the receiver (server), they include what kind of data needs to be delivered.
While all of this data is effective for tracking and, in some cases, creating security threats, it is rather difficult to collect it and can frequently change. The one constant thing in online communication is IP addresses.
They are unique strings of characters assigned by your internet service provider (ISP) to identify each device. The reason for their existence is technical – the internet protocol dictates it as a necessary condition for online communication. Every ISP services different geographical locations and is licensed to assign specific IPs to specific locations.
That’s why everyone on the internet can tell your approximate location and the name of your ISP. IP addresses are the main thing used for online identification – all other methods come into play only later.
Using IP addresses, websites can log each page a certain IP visit and how long it stays there. Worse is the fact that they share such information for advertising purposes or limit the availability of certain information.
For example, airlines frequently log their visitor IPs to track the demand for tickets and raise or lower prices in certain locations. Many other products are also priced similarly online. So, unveiling your IP is not just a security threat but also makes it harder to perform tasks efficiently.
How to hide your IP with proxies?
Proxies act as filters that send and receive data on your behalf. Once you connect to a proxy, your requests are first sent to a proxy server and only then to the final destination. Such a process effectively ensures that your IP address cannot be easily known by anyone.
There are many types of proxies meant for different purposes. Some function on the server’s side and filter incoming requests. Others differ by working with different protocols or are optimized for specific tasks.
For most use intents and purposes it’s enough to know two main distinctions between types of proxy servers. The first one is related to the origin of IP addresses and provides two main types of proxies – residential and datacenter.
Residential proxies are hosted on physical devices with a regular internet connection verified by an ISP. Consider it like routing your connection from a friend’s at-home computer. The process might be a bit slow, but it’s highly unlikely someone will figure out you are using a proxy and not your original IP address.
Besides high legitimacy, residential proxies also provide you the possibility to accurately target a specific location. Since the IP is tied to a physical device, it can even be accurate on a neighborhood level. Unfortunately, these IP addresses are relatively expensive, so most users consider them for extra valuable tasks.
Datacenter proxies hide your IP address in the same way as residential, except that they use virtual IP addresses created in large data centers. These are facilities running powerful servers 24/7. Each such server can house thousands of IP addresses, so there is no one physical device corresponding to each IP.
This setup makes datacenter proxies very affordable compared to their residential counterparts. Thanks to the commercial internet connection and high-tech equipment, they are also generally faster than residential proxies. But speed and affordability come at a price of affordability, as these proxies tend to be easily recognized and even blocked by many websites.
Private vs shared IPs
The second most important distinction you must know when looking for proxies is between private and shared proxies. But there isn’t so much debate here. Whether you choose residential or datacenter, you want a private proxy IP address.
The reason is quite simple and applies to many other services, even physical ones. Sharing access means you will get less performance and possibly run into other inconveniences. That’s because other people are not necessarily using the product in the same way as you are.
Shared proxies allow multiple people to route their requests through the same IP address. Some might use more data than others, so your connection will get significantly slower through no fault of your own.
Even worse is that some IP addresses are being abused and already banned on some websites. For example, social media websites and some e-commerce shops frequently band IP addresses that use bots.
So, scrolling Facebook anonymously or checking pricing data from different locations on Amazon might get you into some roadblocks with shared proxies. Constant CAPTCHA tests or restricted pages will hinder your progress.
Nothing similar will be experienced if you use a private proxy server. All the bandwidth will be dedicated to your needs, and the IPs will guarantee a restriction-free experience.
Once you understand the importance of hiding your IP address, the next step is to choose the right proxy type. It should be clear from this article – the best choice is a private residential or datacenter proxy.
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