Privacy and security are common points of concern when it comes to browsing the internet. VPN and web proxy servers provide ways for users to experience some privacy and safety. They both do the same jobs but are technically different from each other. For example, if you need to create a protected network connection when using a private network then you VPN otherwise if you want to redirect web requests then a proxy server is a better option. Here you can read the difference between VPN and proxy, and Why VPN Is Better Than Web Proxy.
What is a VPN?
Let’s first understand what is VPN.
VPNs are also referred to as virtual private networks. As their name suggests, they are private networks that encrypt users’ data and their IP addresses. You can download VPN for Windows here. Through VPNs, users can change their locations which in turn gives them access to content that is restricted in specific geographical areas.
Working at an operating system level, it provides users with access that is both private and secure while sending or receiving data from the internet. This allows users to use websites safely and without their privacy being infringed on.
What is a Web Proxy Server?
They are also referred to as intermediary servers. These are computers acting as a go-between. They access the web pages on the internet before forwarding the data onto user browsers. This prevents users’ IP addresses from being accessed by the internet servers.
They can be used to access sites and pages that are restricted in some geographical areas. However, proxy servers don’t use encrypted connections. This means that it will only hide a user’s IP address without securing sensitive data.
There are many different types of proxy servers including;
- SOCKS5 Proxy – It restricts data transfers and therefore blocks hacking tools that would scan or access user data. Most people opt to use it for sharing files, streaming videos, and online games.
- HTTP Proxy – This is commonly used to access geo-restricted sites. It is a good option for users living in countries with a lot of internet censorship.
- Transparent Proxy – This controls and monitors web traffic. It isn’t easily noticeable. Most people will only notice it after it has blocked their access. This is why it is called transparent. It is useful for limiting access to certain sites.
Key Differences Between VPNs And Web Proxy Servers
So what is the difference between a VPN and a web proxy server?
Most proxies can be used by the public for free. However, premium services may come at a fee. This usually offers more protective services. They are accessible and you can download VPN for windows quite easily. VPNs on the other hand mostly have a regular fee for their services. Some VPN services are free but these usually have limited daily data usage.
Encryption And Privacy
Data encryption helps you browse through the net without fearing an invasion of privacy and loss of important data. A common way of accessing and tracking someone online is through their IP address. You can check your IP address here. Proxies hide a user’s IP address but do not encrypt data. VPNs use encryption on top of hiding user IP addresses. This makes them more comprehensive than proxies when it comes to privacy and security.
Proxy activity is limited. They can only secure a single website or app at a time. VPNs on the other hand, have broad coverage. They encrypt all the web activities of users regardless of the apps or site visited.
5 Reasons Why You Should Use VPNs
On the surface, proxies and VPNs seem very similar. However, they are quite different in the services they provide and even who they were meant to serve. Many reasons make VPNs better than proxies. A VPN offers much more comprehensive features than proxies. There are many other reasons which can be derived simply by comparing the differences.
- Encryption – VPNs encrypt data from the operating system. This ensures the safety and privacy of all user data and activities. This is an essential tool for those dealing with sensitive data.
- Coverage – VPNs have unlimited access to apps and websites. This means that they will encrypt data for any site or app used. Also if you have a VPN, then you don’t need a proxy server because it can do all that proxies do and more
- Logging – Most VPNs don’t keep logs of user activity. This further enhances the privacy features that they provide. This is unlike proxy servers that mostly keep logs of traffic.
- Speeds – Both proxy and VPNs slow down browsing speeds. However, VPNs affect the browsing speeds a lot less. That means that VPN users will still have faster connections than proxy users.
- Cost – Most VPNs require payment for unlimited use. This may seem like a disadvantage but it comes with its privileges. The services and features for a paid VPN far exceed those of proxy servers. Also because it is paid for, the chances of sales of data to advertisers are almost nil. This allows users to browse without the interruption of data sales.
Wrapping It Up
Both VPNs and Proxy servers offer a level of safety and security. However, for the best experience is best to choose a VPN because they offer more comprehensive features.
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