Web proxies have a lot of benefits for both individuals and companies. You get online anonymity and can browse the internet to your heart’s content.
Proxies also give access to content that has geographical restrictions. Companies and educational institutions can also use web proxies to track internet usage.
Our article explores why startups and entrepreneurs need web proxies. But first, let us start by understanding what they are.
Web Proxies: What Are They?
Web proxies are online computers. They act as middlemen between your browser and remote servers. Think of a web proxy like a security guard. Anybody going in or out of the building must go through a security check.
The same happens when you use the web proxy. Any traffic going in or out of your browser passes through the proxy. Several things will happen here.
- There will be filtering of content to ensure no malicious elements pass through.
- The proxy will hide your IP address in several ways, depending on the one you go for. Take the example of Socks5 proxies. By funneling communication through it, the proxy hides or masks your IP address. It also allows you to bypass geographic restrictions.
You get complete security due to the encryption tunneling method. The proxies use Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) connection and Secure Shell (SSH) encryption. Data network packet exchange happens over a firewall. You never have a direct connection to the server.
- The proxy will also restrict how much content goes through. It saves bandwidth and ensures faster loading speeds.
Let’s explore these points in a little more detail.
Statistics show that there are over 100,000 hacking attempts every single day. The most common is phishing attacks that account for up to 80% of cyber incidents.
As of 2019, 93.6% of malware is polymorphic in nature. What this means is that it continues to evolve, making it harder to detect. It is a hacker tactic as they are always improving the sophistication of their attacks.
Businesses must do all they can to remain safe while online. Security measures like antivirus, anti-malware, and anti-ransomware are no longer an option. Such businesses can also take advantage of web proxies to remain safe.
As we mentioned, proxies remove any harmful content before letting the traffic through. Proxies also provide data encryption. It ensures that only the intended recipient gets the message.
Every time you are online, someone could be tracking what you are doing. It could be cybercriminals who are up to no good. In some instances, the government or security officers could be monitoring the activities.
Web proxies allow you to browse with complete anonymity. The proxy will mask, distort, or hide your IP address. By doing this, the remote server will not know your exact location.
Hiding your IP address means that you can access geo-blocked content. Streaming services like Netflix deny access to specific content depending on the country.
A web proxy allows you to bypass such restrictions without the providers catching on. Let’s say you are in Africa and want to access U.S. content. All you need is a web proxy that gives you an address associated with the U.S. You end up looking like you are in that country right from the comfort of your African location.
Web Scraping Functionalities
Companies collect a lot of data for research purposes. You may need the insights for competitor analysis, price comparisons, and so much more. That is why web scraping is an integral part of business intelligence. The insights from the data help with decision-making around strategies and business practices.
But, repeated requests to one site may raise suspicion. In such a case, the remote server can flag or ban your IP address. Rotating web proxies will assign different IP addresses for each request.
In this way, even if you send out repeated queries, it looks like it is coming from different people.
Social Media Management
Social media has become a fantastic marketing tool for businesses. Yet, it is not possible to have more than one account on the same IP address. Like in the web scraping case above, the site may view this as suspicious.
But with web proxies, each account will have a different IP address. The company can open as many as it needs without incurring penalties.
Monitoring of Internet Use
It can be hard to know which sites employees visit. Some may contain malicious code that could provide a way for hackers to get access to your network. Web proxies can give you insights into the websites they visit.
And, you can block those you consider dangerous. Denying employees access to such sites can help reduce distractions. The company can realize greater productivity and better use of resources.
The proxies will also check email attachments. They then block any links that contain malicious content.
Better Speeds and Performance
Web proxies help with improving speed and performance on websites. They do this by balancing the load by rerouting traffic to other servers. They also help with web caching for faster connections.
The proxy downloads and stores the information from web pages that you visit. It reduces the loading time by using the stored data instead of connecting to the remote server.
Proxies will also block advertisements from other websites. All these help save bandwidth resulting in faster internet speeds.
There are many benefits for startups and entrepreneurs with web proxies. We have shared the major ones in the article above. When shopping, it is crucial to understand what your needs are.
There are many different types of proxies available so have clarity on the features you need. Take time to first read customer reviews before signing up for any service. The right proxy will provide security, online anonymity, and allow for web scraping.
Companies will also enjoy faster internet speed due to caching and load balancing. The company can also track web usage, so you see the sites your employees visit. You can then restrict access to such.
Further, you get to block out malicious content that hackers can use to get into your networks.