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What are private proxies and why you need them
A proxy server is a computer that acts as an intermediary between your computer and the Internet. In a normal Internet connection, when you want to visit a website, your device (PC or smartphone) makes a request to the website’s server. The web server analyzes your request and returns the web page you asked. When accessing a website in this way, your request to the web server discloses a lot of information about you and your device.
Information disclosed when connecting directly to the Internet:
- Your real IP address
- Your real geographical location
- Your device’s system and other metadata
All this information is disclosed by simply accessing a web page. The main information disclosed about you and your online identity is your IP address which is disclosed the moment you load a web page. Later on, this IP address will be used for identifying you and profiling your online behavior.
However, when you use a proxy server, your requests are sent through the proxy server, which handles your requests, forwards them to the web server and then returns the web server’s response, which is forwarded back to your device. In this way, the proxy server masks your IP address and uses its own to send your requests to the web server. In other words, the website’s server is not able to see your IP address and identify you. Because it will think the proxy server is the real user and will be able to see only the proxy server’s IP address.
Proxy servers are used to hide your IP address and mask your requests, so websites can’t identify you and your real (IP/geographical) address.
Differences between public and private proxies
There are two main categories of proxy servers, HTTP/S and SOCKS proxies. The main difference between them is that HTTP/S proxies are used to handle HTTP/HTTPS connections and connect to websites. Whereas, SOCKS proxies are used to connect various apps to the Internet, but not to web servers. For example, SOCKS proxies are used by uTorrent to hide your real IP from other downloading peers. And for these two types of proxy servers, there is another difference based on who controls the server. Hence, there are public and private ones. Here are the differences between the two of them.
|Type||Public Proxy Server||Private Proxy Server|
|Server owner||Undisclosed (You never know who maintains the public server. It could be even a malicious person)||Owned by a proxy provider (You know who owns the server and you always know how to reach them)|
|Security||Poor (You don’t know who is behind a proxy server and what are his intentions with data collected from your traffic)||Decent (Private proxy providers can’t afford to have data breaches or customer data leaked through their proxies, so private proxies are always safe to use)|
|Uptime||Poor (Public proxy servers have a history and being unreliable and offline for long period of time)||Close to 99.9% (The proxy provider is a business and wants to keep its servers running and customers happy)|
|Server Speed||Low speed, limited bandwidth (Public proxies are free to join by anybody and the servers are always used by tens or hundreds of users – making it impossible to maintain a connection speed for more than a few minutes)||High-speed with no perceived slow down (Private proxy servers are used by one person or by a limited number of people – so there’s always enough bandwidth allocated to each user)|
|Server IP’s history||Blacklisted (Most public proxies have blacklisted IPs because some of their users abused these servers to spam websites)||Clean IPs (A private proxy’s value if offered by its ability to connect to the desired website. So, most dedicated private servers are guaranteed to work and connect to restricted websites)|
Setup-wise, there is NO difference between a public and a private proxy server. However, there are little differences that oftentimes make public ones impossible to use and private ones a valuable asset to any online project.
How private proxies benefit your business
Your business benefits from using private proxies in different ways:
- Marketing automation – Most private proxies are used in marketing automation such as social media marketing.
- Bypass regional restrictions – By hiding your IP address, proxy servers advertise to websites their IP address. You can use proxies from other geographical areas (or countries) and access content that is blocked in other areas.
- Perform tests and research – You can use International proxies (from other countries) to access your own websites or various web platforms to test functionality and International targeting.
How we review proxy providers
We reviewed more than 30 proxy providers (actually close to 40), but NOT all of them manage to reach the final list. Only the proxy providers listed now are worth your consideration. Please note, that in the future, after thorough reviews, we might add other providers.
The difficulty of finding the right proxy provider
The private proxy market is a fragmented one. There are countless proxy providers, offering proxy packages for different purposes, making it difficult to choose the right proxy provider for your business or online project.
Even if you find the best provider, you still need to research further for finding the right proxy package. We advise taking a counter-intuitive and contrarian approach. First, start searching for the proxy type you need and afterward, decide on a proxy provider. This is why we have setup BestProxyProviders in this way, so you can find providers based on the proxies you need. First, you select the category, then the best provider for that category.
Different proxy packages for different purposes
Above, there are eight proxy categories from where you can choose the best package and provider for your business:
- Instagram Proxies – used for managing multiple Instagram accounts from a single device or server to avoid “shadowban” or blocks by the social network.
- Virgin Proxies – they have clean IP address and they haven’t been allocated yet, so you can use them to connect even to most restrictive websites.
- Sneaker Proxies – are a major component to any sneaker coping with bots operation and are used for placing buying orders on sneaker selling websites during limited-edition sneaker releases.
- SEO Proxies – used by search marketers for research and SEO purposes.
- Gaming Proxies – gamers used them to automate gaming accounts and to spoof GPS locations when connecting to gaming servers.
- Craigslist Proxies – called Classified ads proxies – are always allocated from a particular geographical area with the purpose of creating geo-targeted classified ads.
- SOCKS Proxies – used for connecting apps that don’t use HTTP connections, such as torrenting or FTP clients.
- Ticketmaster Proxies – used for automating ticket scalping on websites like Ticketmaster, Tickets, StubHub, Evenue.
Does the price matter in the proxy world?
When buying private proxies, you don’t actually pay the server’s setup, but the proxy’s ability to connect to your desired websites. In other words, a proxy package’s price is composed by its ability to connect to the requested websites. Therefore, if you want to buy Instagram proxies, do not get cheap shared proxies, because they are cheaper. They will not connect your accounts successfully to the social network.
You should never compare two packages’ prices without comparing their ability to connect to the website you want. Thus, we can say that, in the private proxy world, prices matter. And what you pay is what you get. However, this shouldn’t be considered an excuse to buy the most expensive proxy package. Compare providers, their proxy packages and their ability to be used on the website you need to access.