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From Online Shopping to Social Media: How Private Proxies Can Safeguard Your Daily Online Activities

Private Proxies Can Safeguard Your Daily Online Activities

Many doubt the usefulness of proxy servers and opt for other security measures instead. Such an opinion can only seem valid when you haven’t used proxies or don’t know how to set them up. They meet all the basic privacy needs commonly assigned to VPNs and can also be used for more advanced tasks.

This is especially true for private proxy servers since they have the most flexibility and best performance. We need to start from the very definition of proxies and their main types to see how exactly private proxies can protect your day-to-day tasks.

What is a proxy server?

Proxy servers act as digital intermediaries when you connect to the World Wide Web. You can set them up to receive all or some of your connection requests and complete them on your behalf. In practice, your IP address and location are changed, so your identity remains anonymous for the end server.

For example, if you use a German proxy to stream online videos, your requests will be first sent to the proxy, and the data will be routed back to you. The streaming service will only see the German IP address, so you will access videos geo-restricted to that country.

A good proxy ensures this process happens in a split second, so the user experience doesn’t change much. However, the performance highly depends on what proxy type you choose. Proxy types are optimized for certain tasks, so you must know about them before choosing. I recommend using a data center proxy for the above example of streaming movies.

Datacenter

They are based in specialized data centers (that’s where the name comes from) with high-tier servers and commercial Internet connections. Such a setup ensures that these proxies can have the fastest speed and not crash when many users connect concurrently.

However, data center proxies also have one serious drawback - they are easy for websites to detect. Some services do not want users to connect with proxies, as bad actors are using them against terms and conditions or harming the servers in other ways.

For this reason, many data center proxies are being restricted with CAPTCHA tests or outright banned from connecting. It’s relatively easy for websites to do because of two reasons. 

First, datacenter proxies use commercial internet connection, so an internet service provider (ISP) hasn’t verified their location for household use. Secondly, datacenter IPs are created virtually in bulk, which makes them similar to one another.

Most types of VPNs also suffer from such problems. That’s why your daily online activities are better protected by a residential or mobile proxy.

Residential

Residential proxies use internet connections from ordinary homes that are verified by an ISP, and behind each of the IPs, there is a physical device running. Such origin of the IP addresses ensures the highest level of legitimacy possible. Even the services with the most suspicions of proxies will have a difficult time detecting them.

If set up well, the connection of a residential proxy doesn’t differ from an ordinary home connection in any way. It provides all the information about the ISP and can be accurate to a neighbourhood level. 

On average, residential proxies are slower than data center proxies, but with a good provider, a residential proxy is an excellent choice. Especially for daily tasks, like surfing the web anonymously. Unfortunately, residential proxies are way more expensive than data center proxies, but this can be mitigated if you decide to share them.

Private vs shared proxies

Shared proxies allow multiple users to connect to the same IP address concurrently. This is an ideal way to use datacenter proxies, as they are powerful and unlikely to lose much performance from multiple users. However, it increases the chance of IP bans or restrictions as other users might be abusing the connection.

That’s why it’s recommended to have a private pool of data center proxies and rotate the IP addresses to avoid restrictions. The same recommendation goes for residential proxies but for a different reason. Multiple users accessing residential IPs at the same time will slow the physical device too much, which might make it barely usable.

Even a cheap private proxy in such a case is a better choice. They might cost more, but in the long term, you save money by avoiding disturbances. Besides, private proxies can be used for a large variety of purposes.

Anonymous Browsing

All popular web browsers can be set up to use private proxies to hide your IP address and change your location. Since websites don’t know your real identity, it is more difficult for them to track you or restrict data availability. Such protection is essential against data brokers or governments intruding on your privacy.

Online shopping

Most e-commerce shops change their pricing depending on the location of the visitor. You risk losing money by overpaying for products or services without changing your location. Using a private proxy ensures that you are in control and can find the best deals available.

Using social media

Platforms like Facebook or LinkedIn are fierce in tracking visitors for targeting ads and restricting using multiple accounts. Private residential proxies are your best bet in avoiding such restrictions, as you can appear as an ordinary visitor while staying anonymous and managing accounts tied to different locations. 

Web scraping

Collecting large amounts of data online requires using scraper bots to connect automatically and send you back the needed information. It saves a lot of time for the user but is only by some servers. Unless you use private proxies. They will hide your identity so you can collect data without exposing your original IP address or getting it banned.

Conclusion

By revisiting the definition and types of proxies, we can see that their use in daily activities remains unmatched. The flexibility of choosing multiple types and integration possibilities makes private proxies the best choice. Other online security options can hardly match these features.

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