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What Is Proxy: Definition, Benefits, Types and How It Works

What is proxies? A proxy is a system that allows you to access the internet using a different IP than what the device accepts. What does it mean? So, when someone accesses the internet network, data such as the type of device used, the location to the user’s information can be detected by the server.

This certainly makes you uncomfortable, right? Because you are worried about your data being snooped on by other people. This is where the role of the proxy is needed.

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The function of a proxy is to hide the user’s real identity so that other people or the websites they visit are not known. So, of course it’s safer!

Well, if you want to know further information about what a proxy is and other functions, let’s read this article to the end!

What is a Proxy?

The definition of a proxy is a computer system that is devoted to accessing the internet network by utilizing an IP address. Usually, the IP address can change when you access it because the role of the proxy itself is as a connecting medium from one network to another.

The existence of a proxy will not be able to work properly without a proxy server. Then, what is a proxy server? In short, a proxy server is a media proxy provider that channels requests ( requests ) you want to access something and ensures that your data remains safe and doesn’t leak.


So, proxies and proxy servers are related to each other in computer systems on the internet. Actually, there are still many people who cannot distinguish between these two things, so it takes an understanding that proxies and proxy servers have their own roles.

Benefits of Using Proxies

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The presence of a proxy provides many benefits for you when accessing the internet. Maybe there are still many who realize that the ease when surfing in cyberspace is thanks to the help of a proxy. Here are the various benefits!


1. Maintain Data Privacy

Not everyone wants their personal data to be known when accessing the internet. Therefore, the function of a proxy is to maintain the privacy of internet user data, so that the proxy will automatically change the IP address and will not be detected by the sites you visit.

2. Ease of Accessing Certain Sites

There are some sites on the internet that cannot be accessed via regular networks, such as sites that contain sensitive content.

Having a proxy will make it easier for you to access certain sites easily, especially if the site is outside the range of where you live (for example, you are currently in America and want to access sites from Japan) then you don’t have to go all the way to Japan. just to access the site.

Also read What Is Gateway, Its Functions, and How It Works on the Network

3. Controlling Internet Access

Proxies can also be used as a medium for controlling certain sites so that they cannot be accessed. For example, computers in schools limit internet access features so that students focus more on computer learning than accessing the internet (such as opening social media).

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If applied to families, of course parents want their children to access useful information and reduce negative content, right? Well, the use of a proxy is as a control medium when children search for certain content, then the system will automatically reject and not display the content they are looking for.

4. Speed ​​up Internet Access

One of the benefits of having a proxy is to speed up internet access. This is because the proxy is capable of storing cache, which is a temporary storage medium when you have visited a site, so when you want to visit a similar site for the second time, the system will quickly direct you to that site.

How Proxies Work

How a proxy works is quite easy and not as complicated as imagined. To give you an idea, let’s say the proxy wants to find the full address of the house you currently live in. Well, the home address on the internet is the IP address.

When you want to visit a site, you usually go to a search engine and type in the IP address to get the content you need. This is where the role of the proxy server will make a request to the main server and get a response whether the site can be displayed in your browser.

The role of the proxy here is to be able to make changes to encrypt your IP address, so that the sites you visit are restricted by the proxy not to access the IP address. Of course, this provides an advantage for those of you who do not want to know their privacy when accessing a site.

Proxy Types

If you think that a proxy consists of only one entity, in fact there are many types of proxies that can be used when surfing the internet. What are the types? Get to know the 4 types of proxies below!

1. Distorting Proxy 

The IP Address in the distorting proxy type is “engineered” so that the IP address you have is not exposed. For example, like your IP Address is 123,456, then Distorting Proxy will change it to 745,394

2. Transparent Proxy 

Just as the name suggests, Transparent Proxy does not make complicated changes because it still uses your IP Address, but will be reprocessed when entering the proxy server

3. High Anonymity Proxy

You will get extra security by using High Anonymity Proxy because it can hide your IP Address. You can also feel the freedom to access various sites by using this type of proxy

4. Anonymous Proxy 

Anonymous Proxy is the type that covers all of your data, so that the remote host will not know for sure where you are accessing the site.

Also read Understanding HTTP, Functions, How it Works and the Difference from HTTPS

Proxy Function

As discussed earlier, the function of a proxy is to protect internet user data to keep it safe. However, there are 3 main functions of a proxy that make it so important to use.

The first function of the proxy is as a filter, which provides protection for the local network and has the potential to experience interference from outside parties. Proxies can also be thought of as firewalls, thereby securing network conditions through special configurations.

In addition to being a filter, a proxy also functions as connection sharing by relying on a gateway, so it does not limit the distance and between regions to access a site.

Finally, the function of proxy is as caching, which is storing the history of the sites you have visited before, making it easier for the system to recall and speed up access to the site you requested.

Things to Watch Out for

Although proxies provide many advantages in terms of maintaining the confidentiality of personal data. However, the name of a technology, of course, has its drawbacks and you should be aware of it. What are the things that you must be aware of regarding the use of proxies?

1. Proxy Use Security

There are proxy services that are free (free) and paid (premium). Usually, free-based proxies are less secure. Therefore, you must be careful in choosing a proxy and ensure that its security is guaranteed.

2. Not All Proxies are Encrypted

One of the concerns about using a proxy is that not everything is guaranteed to be encrypted. If the proxy is not encrypted, it is very likely that the request you gave is plain text.

As a result? Any party can access your account, both knowing the password, location and username.

3. Search History Saver

Selling data to irresponsible parties is indeed quite risky when using a proxy. Make sure that the proxy you are using has strict terms and security because to anticipate if the proxy turns out to be using the original IP address and collecting your search history in the browser.

How to Enable Proxy in Browser

Enabling a proxy in the browser is easy, you know! Depending on what type of browser you are using, from Mozilla, Google Chrome, and Internet Explorer, here are the steps to activate it.

1. Mozilla Firefox

Just like when you want to start browsing, open Mozilla Firefox and select the menu option located in the menu icon (its position is at the top right). After that, select advanced-network-settings which will direct you to the manual proxy configuration option.

While in manual proxy configuration, input the proxy port and ip. Don’t forget to put a checklist on “use this proxy server for all protocols” and finally select OK.

2. Google Chrome

Navigate your selection to the settings menu and immediately proceed to “show advance settings”. This is where you can make settings by selecting change proxy settings-LAN-use proxy server. After that, type the proxy IP and Port, then click OK.

3. Internet Explorer

Setting proxy in internet explorer is much easier than Chrome and Mozilla. You just need to select the download menu and options. If you have, choose sock configuration and start entering the proxy port and IP, then save all the data by selecting OK.

Now, after knowing the meaning of proxy, its types, functions and how it works, are you now planning to activate a proxy in your browser? Of course! Moreover, how to activate a proxy is a very easy thing to do. Just follow the steps as above, yes!

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Muhamad Nagib
Muhamad Nagib
Information technology writer who has great interest in Windows, MacOS and Linux-based computers as well as Android and iOS smart devices, therefore this website is dedicated to reviewing all information about these operating systems and devices. Learn more.


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