The proxy server: A simple explanation

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COMMUNICATED – We know that the client and the server are not always directly connected. In many networks, the so-called proxy servers function as a mediating entity that allows better distribution of the data stream and implements other security mechanisms. Sometimes it is also private users who choose to divert their traffic on the Internet through a proxy server in order to hide their own address to navigate anonymously.

What is a proxy server?

A proxy is a server that intervenes as a communication interface between two systems. As a mediation instance, a proxy server receives the client’s requests and forwards them to the destination server with its own address as the sender. Private users, when surfing the Internet, come into contact without knowing it with reverse proxies or reverse proxies, high-power servers used by companies to protect their own server from attacks from the Internet, spread the load on their network and increase the availability of your online services. Before the production systems, they receive the requests on their behalf and redirect them to the server in the background. Of all this the Internet user does not perceive anything.

Similarly, the so-called forward proxies (forwarding proxy) like rotating proxies act on corporate networks to group data traffic to the Internet, implement filtering functions or increase the speed of caching browsing. In this case the proxy server acts as the only Internet access. If an employee of the company wanted to access online services from the local network, the request of their browser would first circulate through the proxy, which allows the company to block certain content on the Internet and limit, in this way, the private use of Internet among employees.

Use a proxy privately

When a private user uses a high anonymity proxy server, it is usually a priority to maintain anonymity in the network, hiding their system behind the IP address of the proxy provider, which may be due to different reasons: in addition to protecting the private sphere in a time of constant vigilance, access to content blocked by IP-based geolocation is also a decisive reason for many users. This blocking system allows providers to limit their online services to certain countries. This is what happened a few years ago with Netflix, the platform for viewing movies and series on the Internet, which at first was not available to Spanish users, who, using an American proxy, could circumvent the blockade (today this possibility is no longer exists).

There are numerous providers on the Internet that offer cheap proxies and even proxy services for free. However, Internet users should devote a reflection to the choice of the server that will intervene in the traffic between their computer and the Internet. And it is that a proxy may be able to eliminate the fingerprints, but the providers have full access to the data that circulates through their server.

In the end, use proxies wisely. Hopefully this information is useful for you. Thank you for reading.