Most people only have a vague idea of what a proxy is and why you might use one. You might think proxies are used for getting around restrictions on your network for using some websites such as Netflix. You might associate proxies with anonymity and preventing identity theft. The truth is, proxies are useful for many things, and they’re particularly important for company IT networks.
What is a proxy?
A proxy is a type of computer known as a server. That’s why a proxy is often referred to as a “proxy server.” A server is a computer that handles various aspects of activity between computers on a network. Servers have various specialized purposes such as storing files, hosting websites and many others. In the case of proxy servers, they act as an intermediary in requests for information from one computer to another.
What is an anonymous proxy?
Most people associate proxy servers with their ability to anonymize your identity or hide your location when browsing or doing other internet activities. In this case, you’re dealing with a specific type of proxy server that specializes in anonymity and security. Proxies are the most common way that people use to bypass government censorship of certain websites or types of content. They’re also useful for remaining anonymous online when communicating with sensitive information.
How does it work?
Whenever you interact through your web browser, you’re sending a request to a web server. In order to do this, your computer has to transmit its IP address, which is a long string of numbers that acts as a code that describes your computer’s physical location. In order to hide your location and your identity, you need to hide your IP address. This is most often accomplished through the use of a proxy server.
A proxy server has software that can remove your IP address and replace it with a different one before your communication is sent to the target computer. If this procedure is done correctly, the information is forwarded without adding any information that could reveal your identity or location, thus accomplishing the goal of keeping you anonymous. This type of service is usually inexpensive and effective, but in cases where performance is crucial, it can cause lag in communications.
If the topic of anonymous proxies is a completely new concept to you, these facts should give you a basic understanding of what it’s about. Proxies can be used for many purposes in both business and personal activities. If you’re a business owner, it pays to gain a greater understanding of proxies and how they can increase your company’s security.