The mystical world of proxies You might have seen a proxy error message on your browser sometimes. A proxy is a web server through which your request to access the internet passes.
Browsing When you type a web address on your browser, the request to access that web address is transmitted from your modem to the router. The router then transmits to a street level router, then to a neighborhood router which sends the request to an ISP server and finally to the Internet backbone where the website you are accessing is.
The website server you are accessing will transmit the information you requested in a reversal of the first process. The information can be a form you are filling online, a video call, a page loading, a download and any such activity.
In such a process, your browsing information is not hidden to the website you are accessing.
What is a proxy? A proxy server is in the middle of this process; it can be found in your locale, a far off town or a distant country. It is a simple piece of equipment, in fact, with a little configuration a laptop can be turned into a proxy server.
When you type in a web address, the request will go through the original process but when it reaches a proxy, the proxy removes some information from your request and replaces it. In other words, it hides and alters some information about you to the website you are accessing.
The website will also send the information in a reverse process through the proxy. The altered information it received from the proxy will be recorded as your real information.
By doing this, the proxy safeguards your privacy. However, due to this added step in your access to the internet, your browsing speed becomes slower even if by a thousandth of a second.
There are different privacy levels you can achieve with various types of proxies, they are; • Transparent- Your information is changed. • Distorting- Removes some information and changes some data. • Anonymous- Removes information that the web might use to trace you. Proxy servers can be public, private or paid for access. They can be configured to protect your privacy to any of the above levels, and they work with HTTP and SOCKS protocols. Since a single proxy is not very efficient for privacy, it is better to use a backconnect proxy.
A backconnect proxy is made up of a lot of proxies each having unique configurations. The number of proxies can vary according to the number of proxies you need. Like a standard proxy; each proxy scrapes off some of your data and replaces it with its own.
However, when the website to which you had sent your request responds, it comes through a different proxy. This process is consistent with all your requests to the web page; each goes out through a different proxy.
If you have ever tried to access the same page many times you might have had to pass a captcha test. This happens when a search engine like Google or Bing notices multiple requests from the same proxy. If you pass captcha the site you are accessing can still limit the rate at which you access it so you are slowed down.
If you use backconnect proxies the chances of this happening is lowered significantly, hence you can make many requests to the website or page. Since it becomes hard for the website you are accessing to find any pattern about your browsing.
You can get a package of backconnect proxies from Microleaves with 25, 50,100, or more backconnect proxy packages.
You need to know what the law says about crawling in your country, however, to avoid committing a crime.
The increased privacy you get with a backconnect proxy has one major flaw; you might experience inconsistent browsing speeds as some proxies will be super-fast while others will be painfully slow. If you have a limited budget, costs can also be a hindrance.
A commercial use of backconnect proxies is usually in mining data from websites. Once a proxy is blacklisted, Microleaves deletes it while it updates its systems with new proxy addresses every ten minutes.
Rotating proxies work like the standard proxies but are more efficient if your objective is to keep your browsing private. When you use a rotating proxy to access a website, your request will go through the same proxy and the response will come through the same proxy.
This will go on but after some time, maybe 5 or 10 minutes the proxy will change. This cycle will continue and eventually; you will be using the same proxy you started with.
While it offers better privacy compared to the standard proxy, it allows the sites you are browsing to establish the patterns of your activity, so it is less efficient than backconnect proxies in safeguarding your browsing privacy.
You might not be able to make multiple requests to a single web page with rotating proxies, the website will detect it.
Reverse proxies Reverse proxies are what a site might use to enhance their security. There are a lot of different reasons why a company might use a reverse proxy system.
The proxy stands between the web server and the requests coming to the company website. It becomes hard to access the company serves as the proxy conceals the details. When used with firewalls it helps protect an organization from DDoS attacks.
When there are many requests to the company web servers, reverse proxies can keep out malicious requests and allow the authentic ones through. They also make it possible for a company to use a single web address even if it has many web servers.
Reverse proxies also have the added benefit of reducing the load on a company’s web servers by facilitating data compression.
There is a difference between all these proxies and Tor
With standard, rotating, backconnect and reverse proxies, there is always one proxy in the chain of communication from your computer to the web server. You can find out more about them at Microleaves.
Tor, on the other hand, bounces your request through a number of internal proxies.