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Proxy vs VPN

Proxy vs VPN: What Is the Difference?

In today’s world, businesses are innovating and delivering more value in their sphere of endeavor. Companies are interacting and communicating with each other – and eventually, collaborating on different ventures to improve service delivery.

In all of these activities between business entities, specific tools have become essential to allow data sharing. The uses of a proxy or VPN are a couple of such tools.

What is a Proxy Server?

A proxy server is a server that connects to the internet on behalf of your device. It firstly sends all your internet requests routes to another system. Then provides your requests on to the web, receive a response from it, and sends the information back to you.

Essentially, a proxy server is a middle-man system that communicates with the web on your behalf by making use of its IP address instead of yours.

There are different types of servers in the market, and it is fundamentally important to understand what each does before using any of them.

VPNs are the most popular kind of individual servers and are mostly used by B2C clients.

Every business owner will always go the extra mile to protect their data since nobody wants to leave their tracks open. Therefore, unauthorized intrusion into a business’s internet privacy is never healthy, and most often than not, it isn’t safe.

A proxy server performs several functions, and they are as follows:

  • An Internet connection can be shared with computers on a LAN using a proxy server.
  • Proxy server speeds up online browsing.
  • A proxy server is excellent for controlling your employees’ use of the internet — they are great for restricting data use or blocking specific sites.
  • A proxy server is excellent for accessing Geo-restricted content on the internet.

More so, proxy servers can be useful in web scraping and excellent for securing computers on a LAN. For a business to a business transaction (as between manufacturers and wholesalers), a proxy server provides essential protection against hackers.

Let’s take a look at VPNs and their benefits:

What are VPNs?

VPNs are the most common type of private proxy servers. They also provide excellent general security when it comes to individual devices:

  • They go a step beyond masking your IP address by encrypting your data, making it invincible to your ISP and government.
  • They perform a similar function as a proxy server — they are almost unstoppable and nearly impossible to track by ordinary users.

I personally use NordVPN to secure all my online activities and become completely anonymous online so that even my ISP cannot see my online activities.

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Significant Differences Between a Proxy and VPN

When you consider the difference between a proxy and a VPN, a lot comes to play.

At first glance, the definitions of a proxy server and a VPN draw out the similarity in design and performance. The first thing one sees about both is their ability to mask a person’s valid IP address and keep you anonymous.

However, there are significant differences between a proxy server and a VPN (Virtual Private Network).

A major difference between a proxy server and a VPN is that setting up a VPN protects your device at the operating system level. However, setting up a proxy server only masks your IP address in a particular application or web browser.

In painting a clearer picture, a proxy only masks your IP address when using a specific application on your device, whereas a VPN hides your IP address when using all apps on your device.

When it comes to business, proxy takes the lead. Companies can leverage proxies to scrape unlimited data. The place of using proxies for SEO monitoring cannot go under the carpet. A proxy can give you a competitive edge by scraping valuable data from their sites.

VPNs come handy for B2C Clients and helps secure their data, including assisting them to stay anonymous.

Knowing proxy and VPN differences in most business circles is essential. This way, you’ll be able to put them side by side and understand what each can offer your business, thus make an informed decision at the end of the day.


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