What Are Proxies Used For?

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Many people find out about proxies when they start exploring various ways of protecting their identity online. Over the years, proxies have become very popular both in commercial and business niches. It probably leaves you wondering what proxies are used for.

Proxies have many use cases. For instance, using a Taiwan Proxy, you can bypass geo-restrictions and access your favorite content. They also offer several benefits to their users. Before we dive into their common uses and benefits, you should understand what proxies actually are. 

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Here is everything you need to know about proxies, including benefits and everyday use cases. 

Proxy technology

When you are accessing online content, you do it directly. Whether it’s through a web browser, an app, or a game client, you directly communicate to the end servers and exchange data packets with them. Proxy technology enables you to maintain the communication with servers online but through an intermediary.

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The intermediary, in this case, is a proxy server. Instead of making requests directly from servers that host the website you want to access, you make a request from a proxy server. The proxy server then uses a new IP address to forward your request to the target server. The target server responds with a data package; your proxy server receives it and forwards it to you.

If you think about it, a proxy server acts as your personal gateway. Your entire traffic goes through it while your real IP address remains hidden.

Behind proxies 

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Behind proxies refers to a user that uses a proxy. When behind a proxy, all your traffic is tunneled through a proxy server. The proxy servers that people and businesses use to gateway their traffic are also called forward proxies because they forward the data packets.

Users are not restricted to use one proxy. They can tunnel their traffic through as many proxies as they want, thus adding additional layers of security and improving anonymity. However, this can substantially increase latency and limit the bandwidth. 

But the servers can be placed behind proxies too. In this case, we are talking about reverse proxies. They are often used to provide additional control to servers administrators and to protect servers. Reverse proxies can help with load balancing, content caching, and compression of data packets for better speed and load time. 

Benefits of using proxies

Besides being very simple to use, proxies offer several benefits. It’s precisely why they are a very popular solution nowadays.

One of the most wide-known benefits of using proxies is anonymity. When you use a proxy server, the websites you access won’t be able to find out your actual IP address. They will think that the proxy server IP address is instead yours. 

Proxies can also enable you to bypass geo-restrictions. Some websites and online services such as streaming may lock their content. If your IP doesn’t originate from the list of countries with access to the content, you’ll be left out. For instance, let’s say you can access content reserved for people living in Taiwan. You can bypass this restriction by simply connecting through a Taiwan proxy. Click here to learn more about Taiwan proxies. 

Proxy servers can also save you some time. Without a proxy, you need to download the data every time you want to access a website. However, when the data is cached and stored on a proxy, you’ll experience significantly faster load times. 

Another benefit is improved online security. Proxy servers are often configured to prevent access to malicious websites. When browsing the internet through a proxy, the chances of clicking on a malware or phishing link are pretty slim.

Common uses of proxies

Proxies have found their use case among both individual and business users. 

They are often used as anonymity and security solutions. Since they hide their users’ real IP addresses, they make it a lot harder for hackers to locate computers and launch an attack. They also make business servers less vulnerable by adding an additional layer of security. 

Remember our Taiwan proxy example? People often use proxies to access content websites, and online service providers lock behind geo-restrictions.  

Businesses often use them to launch and complete data scraping operations. Since most websites have protection to keep scraping bots out, the proxy can help bypass this measure and help companies get a hold of the data they want. 

Another business use case is better to control the online traffic. IT departments can configure the proxies to limit the use of the internet for employees or manage the bandwidth so that everyone can use online resources even at peak times. 

Conclusion

While proxy is a simple solution that acts as a gateway between you and the world wide web, it found many use cases. Proxies are widely used by businesses and individuals around the globe. They can help improve online security, bypass geo-restrictions, and streamline some sensitive online activities that would otherwise be impossible, such as web scraping.

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Cameron James Connor
He has worked with various business magazines like Business Today Outlook as a freelancer before joining the team. She is an addicted reader of self-help books, fiction, and journals.

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