Proxies work as links between users and websites that they visit. Their main purpose is to pass on web requests, but they can also filter the web, provide cache, privacy, and protection. People use proxies for many reasons. The main ones include changing their IP addresses, gaining access to certain web pages or encrypting their data.
Users can get proxies for free, or they can pay for them. It is better to buy a proxy because it is safer, faster, and more reliable. But, paying for a proxy would not ensure that users’ privacy is secured and their IPs are hidden. So, it is important to know the difference between proxies that you can buy.
The difference between shared and dedicated proxies
We will introduce you to two types of proxies: shared and dedicated. They offer users different options and possibilities, and they do not come with the same price tag.
The main characteristic of this type of proxy is that users share it with others. Users of shared proxies do not have to know each other, and they can live in different parts of the world. People and companies use shared proxies in order to browse the web anonymously, access content that is restricted or filter the web. Sharing a proxy often means sharing an IP address.
Shared proxies are cheap proxies. They are easier to provide and maintain than dedicated ones. Shared proxies can provide anonymity and protect users’ privacy at a lower cost. However, the lower cost comes with many downsides, which we will discuss later.
Only one person has access to a dedicated proxy. Users opt for dedicated proxies to hide their IP addresses and protect their privacy and security.
Besides ensuring users’ privacy and security, dedicated proxies also provide higher speed, since there is only one person that is using them. This type of proxy has a better ability to bypass blocked websites, so it can get around restrictions, filters, and firewalls. Dedicated proxies can give users IP addresses from anywhere in the world, so they can bypass geographic restrictions and become untraceable.
To sum up, dedicated proxies are made for one user. Being the only user of proxies gives them a faster service and protects their privacy. Also, a dedicated proxy can bypass restrictions and firewalls. However, they are more expensive than shared proxies. But, with the higher price come more possibilities and less risk.
7 risks of cheap proxies
As you can see, there are differences between cheap, shared proxies, and dedicated ones. Spending more money on proxies will save you from certain risks. It is important to get to know problems that can occur if you buy cheap proxies.
Sharing an IP address
Sharing a proxy usually comes with sharing an IP address. So, what is a downside to that? Well, other users of your proxy can cause you problems. There is a risk of websites blacklisting you, even if you have never visited them.
If someone who shares your IP address does something wrong and not allowed on a certain website, websites will blacklist your whole IP address. So, you will not be able to access sites due to other users’ wrongdoings. When you share an IP address with others, you also share consequences. This is a huge risk since you do not have any control over the actions of others. With a dedicated proxy, you are the only one who has a certain IP address, so you are in control over your traffic. There is not any risk of having problems caused by other users.
Being interpreted as a spam
Even if you do not share proxies with people who have malicious intentions, you could still experience problems while using shared proxies. This kind of problem occurs when many people with the same IP address use Google at the same time. Google could mark this occurrence as spam. Spam is when a number of users send irrelevant or unwelcome messages for the purposes of advertising or spreading malware.
Google has to prevent these actions efficiently. Google prevents them by enforcing additional steps in order to check the authenticity of a user. That is why Google could ask users to fill out a captcha message in order to continue using its services. This occurrence would force them to spend more time searching for something and losing energy on unnecessary work.
Another risk when many users share proxies is not being able to predict the time it will take to search the web. When you share proxies, you also share bandwidth. Sharing bandwidth could lead to proxies becoming overloaded, and it will slow the connections down. Sometimes, searching for something can take up more than one minute, instead of a couple of seconds. Commonly, users need more than just one piece of information on the internet, so the process of waiting for proxies to connect could be really slow and nerve-racking.
When you are the only one who uses a proxy, which is the case with the dedicated one, you do not share bandwidth. Not sharing bandwidth means that your connection is always fast and stays the same no matter how long you are using your proxies. So, you can save a lot of time and get things done much faster.
Flagged IP addresses from the beginning
There is a reason why you spend less money on shared proxies. Usually, when people buy this type of proxies, they buy proxies that have been used. So, other people had the same IP addresses before current users.
Proxy providers could sell users IP addresses that were flagged, so they would not be allowed to access many online platforms, websites, or social networks. So, users could end up with flagged IP addresses even before they start using them.
To sum up, buying cheap proxies could limit your options. Users will avoid this uncertainty with dedicated proxies.
When you spend more money on proxies, you ensure access to every online platform.
A limited number of IP addresses
In order to provide services that cost less, a lot of proxy providers will choose data center packages that are cheaper.
There is a big chance that they come with a limited number of locations, IP pools, and servers.
Having a limited number of IP addresses means that users will be able to change their IP addresses for a certain amount of time before being given the same IP addresses that they already had.
For example, if users want to get new IP addresses for their proxy package, there is a chance that there would not be any new IP addresses left in their IP pool. So, users will get IPs that they already used before. In case that their IP addresses were flagged while they were using them, users will end up with useless IPs. So, there is a likelihood that buying cheap proxies will limit users’ options.
Another characteristic of cheap proxies is their unreliability. Users can never know how good they are and how long they are going to work. There is a big chance that these proxies would not work when you need them to. Also, shared proxy servers wear down much faster than dedicated ones. So, there is no certainty of how long they would last.
In addition, there is a possibility that proxy providers could sell cheap proxies that come from servers that are faulty. Using cheaper, faulty servers will also affect the quality of proxies and their reliability.
So, reliability is very important. When you invest in proxies, you need an assurance that you will be able to use them for a certain amount of time and that they will work when you need them to. Dedicated proxies will guarantee you that reliability.
A lower level of anonymity
When users have cheap proxies, they have the ability to hide their IP addresses and stay anonymous when visiting websites. But, websites are still aware that a proxy user is visiting them.
Whenever someone with a proxy visits a website, that website is alerted that those requests are being forwarded, which means that they are coming from a user with proxies. Users can prevent this with elite proxies. But, cheap proxies are not elite, so they do not give users that level of anonymity.
So, there is a risk of getting proxies with headers that are not anonymous. Not giving away IP addresses could provide enough anonymity for some, but there are users that will require more than just a hidden IP address, which cheap proxies cannot provide.
To conclude, there are differences between shared, cheap proxies and dedicated ones. When choosing cheap proxies, users can face dangerous risks. Websites can blacklist or flag their IP addresses because of other users’ actions.
Websites flagging users’ IPs will lead to users having limited access to certain websites, or to not having any access at all. Google can also interpret users’ visits as spam, which can cause additional steps while searching and spending more time than they want to on unnecessary actions. Also, users cannot predict the speed, duration or the reliability of cheap proxies.
All these factors would lead to spending more time and money, which could be very frustrating for many users. So, if you want to avoid all these risks, opting for dedicated proxies is the best option.