Anyone who has been enjoying the internet for a while has probably encountered a reason to want to increase their safety or anonymity online. There are a few ways to increase your digital security, but two of the ways you often hear about are Proxies and VPNs.
Today we are going to discuss what each of these services are, how they are used, and which is the better choice.
First, let’s discuss what a proxy server actually is!
A proxy server is effectively a relay between your system and the host server. This means that when the host computer tries to look at your IP address it actually reads the address of the proxy server.
What Types of Proxy Servers Are There?
There are two types of proxy servers. The first is an HTTP Proxy Server. These are used for basic web surfing and can are capable of accessing block websites. This type of proxy server only caters to web pages.
The second type of server is a SOCKS proxy server. A SOCKS server is considered a general purpose. The communication to this server isn’t limited to web pages and is often more popular than HTTP servers. Unfortunately, this also means they are usually slower running.
Benefits of a Proxy Server
- Proxy servers have many benefits.
- Works with BitTorrent
- Fast speeds
- Easy setup
- 100% uptime
Cons of a Proxy Server
- Doesn’t offer full digital protection
- Uses cache data
- Must be configured to ensure the safety
Now we know what proxy servers are, so let’s discuss VPNs.
VPNs, or virtual private networks, create alternate paths that circumnavigate the path your ISP provides. It does this by using dozens of other servers that take the place of your own, which effectively hides your location and information.
VPNs encrypt your data and allow ultimate digital privacy. There are many options for VPNs. You can rely on VPNpro’s list of best services for Windows to help pick the right one.
Do Different VPNs Do Different Things?
Yes! Although the end goal for all VPNs is the same, many of them do not succeed in doing the best job as a virtual private network.
If you use a reputable VPN your data is heavily protected by military grade encryption. This can be used to unblock geo-restricted websites, protect your personal information, and much more.
Unfortunately, some less than reputable VPN options can make it seem like you are safe, but they sometimes sell your data and have lacklustre features. These low-end VPNs can actually leave you worse off than before.
Benefits of VPNs
- Works with Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, and IOS
- Fast speeds
- Easy to Use
- 100% uptime
- Military grade encryption
- Protect all your information
Cons of VPNs
- More research to find reputable services
- Slower speeds than Proxies
- Higher cost point
Though both VPNs and Proxies can work to bypass geo-restrictions, only VPNs can offer full digital protection. A virtual private network protects your location information, private data, bypass censorship, use torrenting sites safely, hide browsing activity from your ISP, access your home network while travelling, and much more.
Though proxy servers do serve an important person, if you are going to seek protection on the internet, you should go with the option that protects you from all angles!
The internet is a wonderful thing, but it is also dangerous. There are a lot of options and ways to protect yourself, and it ultimately all comes down to exactly what you want out of your digital experience.
If you feel confident in your safety online, but need to access blocked websites, a proxy server can work for you!
If you don’t trust your privacy while online or just want to ensure that your personal information and devices are protected, a VPN is the right choice for you.
No matter which option you choose, you should feel confident in your time spent online. Taking extra steps to protect yourself lets you enjoy the internet in the way it should be enjoyed – uncensored and fair.