With todays’ online security threats protection from Cyber-attacks, Cyber-criminals and Hackers is of the utmost concern. Our online presence is under attack like never before, whether you are browsing, streaming, etc. In order to keep us secure and anonymous, we have many available solutions to chose from.
We will look at two of these options, the use of a Proxy Server and a VPN, they both offer a higher degree of online privacy, but how they accomplish this is very different. In this VPN Vs Proxy comparison, we will look at their differences, and which one we should choose to protect our online security, privacy, and anonymity.
So VPN Vs Proxy – Which One Would You Choose, let’s begin!!!
What Is A VPN?
A VPN (Virtual Private Network) makes it appear your online activity, whatever that may be, to be originating from a different IP address, other than your true IP address. A VPN builds a private network over your entire network connection.
There are a couple of options when choosing a VPN, you can use a “Free” version which I do not recommend, I would opt for a paid version from a reputable provider. A VPN is in most cases a downloadable software, and once you have installed and set up the software on your computer or device, your entire online connection is protected. This protection allows the user to browse, download/upload files, read/send emails, share files and stream content, etc. securely and privately while online.
How Does A VPN Work?
Now that you have set up your reputable VPN software you are ready to use. A VPN software works by creating a secure connection from your computer/device to wherever you are trying to connect.
The software creates a tunnel in which all your traffic passes through, the encrypted traffic leaves your computer/device via the tunnel to the VPN server and then to its online destination and back again. A VPN provider has servers located in different countries/cities all over the world.
When you start the VPN software you will be able to choose a server to connect, as stated earlier these servers are located around the world, once connected to a server that you have chosen all your traffic will seem to originate from this server that has a different IP address than your own.
In addition to the end to end secure tunnel and the different IP address, the VPN software encrypts all your traffic. This encryption makes it virtually impossible for any 3rd party or your ISP ( Internet Sevice Provider) to access the data you are sending or receiving through your network. This encryption is especially beneficial when you are using any public Wi-Fi connection.
I would not recommend the use of any “Free” VPNs, I would research a reputable provider who offers no less than
- AES 256 Bit-Key military-grade encryption
- Strict No-Log Policy
- Wide device compatibility
- Wide platform compatibility
- Online anonymity
- Reasonable cost
- Numerous servers located in many Countries located worldwide
- Internet Kill Switch ( IKS)
- The number of devices connected simultaneously
There are more features you might consider for your personal needs.
Here is a link to an interesting article about Free VPN Services
There are many PROS with VPN use, I have listed some below
- Secure connection
- Encrypted data transmission and reception
- Access to your paid subscription services in Geo-Locked locations
There are some CONS with VPN use, I have listed some below
- Possible slow internet connection speed
- Memory and or processing power use
What Is A Proxy Server?
How Does A Proxy Server Work?
A Proxy Server is a connection between your computer/device and the internet. When using a Proxy server your true IP address will be hidden. The address that is seen will be that of the Proxy Server, this makes it seem as though your online activity originates from another location.
Since the only security or privacy measures provided with the use of a Proxy Server is the ability to hide your true IP address and does not provide any type of data encryption or secure connection from your computer/device along the entirety of your network, your data is accessible by anyone using the internet connection. Your ISP provider, cyber-attacks, cyber-criminals, and hackers would all have access to all the traffic flowing to and from your computer/device so because of this the use of a Proxy Server is very limited.
Since a Proxy Server is not system-wide similar to a VPN, a Proxy Server is configured on an application level and not a downloadable software program you must configure certain applications to run a Proxy Server on your computer/device.
Types Of Proxies
We will look at the most common Proxies, the first being
- Public Proxy – This proxy is the most widely used, Public Proxies are “Free”, and because of this using a Public Proxy can lead to instability due to user overload. There is also an added security risk with the use of Public Proxy, the identity of people running the server is unknown.
- SOCKS Proxy – SOCKS Proxies are the most versatile of the three. They can handle much more diverse traffic and are suited for P2P (Peer 2 Peer) file sharing and Torrenting.
There are some PROS with Proxy Use
- Public Proxies are free
- Hide your true IP address
- Allow access to Geo-Blocked locations
There are many Cons with Proxy Server use
- No encryption
- Unstable internet connections
- Owner of Proxy Server Knows your true IP address
- Your data/information is exposed which could lead to a hack
- Your data/information can be tampered with as it moves through the Proxy Server
VPN Vs Proxy – Which One Would You Choose?
For me 100% of the time I would use a VPN!!!
In my opinion, I can not personally think of any situation where I would choose a Proxy server over a VPN, the risk to your online presence is much too great. Even with the PROS of Proxy Servers, I would not recommend taking that chance.
I would recommend the use of a reputable VPN provider, A VPN will give you the security that a Proxy Server can not and much more. They are also paid Proxy Servers available but they still do not provide any more protection for your data/information than that of the “Free” Proxies. So, if you are going to pay you would be much better off with a reputable VPN provider.
So, in the end, there is no VPN Vs Proxy, it is just a VPN!!!!!
I hope you enjoyed this post and if you have any questions or just want to leave a comment please do so below
Stay secure and always practice
Safe Text !!!