Have you ever received so many ads that seem focused on or directly related to your recent online searches? This is not a coincidence. Digital marketing agencies can track your web searches and activity to push relevant ads and promotions to you.
With tracking, malware, and ransomware, many people turn to proxy servers to keep their sensitive data protected from prying eyes. There are countless options out there, and things can get complicated quickly. If you’re unsure which proxy would be suitable for you, it’s essential to know that there are three key proxy anonymity category levels, i.e., elite, transparent, and anonymous proxies. Here’s a brief overview of each category and how they work.
Proxy Anonymity Levels and Their Differences
There are numerous ways to classify proxy servers, but this section highlights the levels of anonymity, regardless of protocol, speed, location, and other characteristics.
Transparent proxies are regular proxy servers that send requests in the original format, revealing the user’s actual IP address. In other words, the servers you’re communicating with can “see” you’re using a proxy.
As expected, transparent proxies can’t keep you anonymous nor safe. This type of proxy server is used as a gateway in most cases. Businesses, libraries, and educational institutions can use transparent proxies to authenticate users, track their activity, and prevent them from accessing restricted content.
Anonymous proxies don’t reveal your actual IP address. They’ll either submit the address of the proxy or appear blank. However, just like transparent proxies, they’ll reveal you’re using a proxy server.
While they may seem similar to transparent proxies, anonymous proxies provide a level of privacy for the user. Although the web server will know that you’re using a proxy server, your actual IP address remains hidden. Therefore, your private data and activities remain protected, hence why anonymous proxies are steadily gaining popularity.
Benefits of Using Anonymous Proxies
- Protection from identity theft
Cybercriminals lure unsuspecting users via emails and text messages to reveal vital personal information, which they use to commit online fraud. Therefore, an anonymous proxy blocks any connections from malicious sources, preventing tracking, malware attacks, etc.
- Protection from online marketers
Using an anonymous proxy means advertising networks can’t track your web activity, so you’ll be safe from annoying ads and other targeted content.
Anonymous proxies can offer better network performance thanks to the cache feature. This means it takes a shorter time to receive responses for all requests, which will save your bandwidth and time, especially for large networks.
- Accessing restricted sites
People visiting countries with banned social media sites, like Facebook or Instagram, can use anonymous proxies from unrestricted locations to access their preferred content.
Also known as high anonymity proxies, elite proxies come with additional features besides the basic functions provided by other HTTP proxies. These proxies are advantageous for privacy and can also hide that the client is using a proxy server in the first place. Your IP address will be completely concealed, and the websites, apps, and services you use won’t know you’re using a proxy.
Elite proxies don’t send out headers with the user’s IP address. Instead, they make your traffic look like it’s coming from a regular internet user without a proxy. The server you’re trying to reach views the request as any other HTTP connection and answers it. Once the proxy gets a response, it sends the data back to you.
Benefits of Using Elite Proxies
- Unrestricted internet access
Elite proxies are ideal for unblocking websites or accessing foreign services since they’re indistinguishable from regular user traffic.
Clients enjoy protection and privacy since their sensitive data is kept safe and hidden. Some proxies can even intercept and block requests to dangerous sites, protecting users from downloading malware.
Certain platforms (like Netflix) don’t support proxies at all. They also block VPNs because they all use the same range of IP addresses, so they’re easy to flag. If you’re looking to access content that’s only available to users in a specific region, a premium elite proxy from that region is your only option.
Using the internet without reliable protection is riskier than ever. Nothing is worth more than your sensitive data, and proxies (residential, datacenter, or mobile) offer a fantastic way to keep both your personal and professional online activity safe.