What Are Proxies Used For?

A proxy server is an anonymization tool. It is widely used these days both on a business level and for personal purposes. What advantages does it bring to the table?

Proxies are intermediary servers between their users and the internet. Their main task for which they are used is hiding the user’s IP address and providing multiple substitutes that are operating instead of the original IP. That might not sound like a big impact, but it surely is.

Your IP address is like your fingerprint on the internet. Everywhere you go, everything you touch leaves a mark that can be traced back to you. Every site you visit is opened by showing your fingerprints that are ‘scanned’. This way, you can be identified. IP address gives away your hostname, Internet Service Provider (ISP), and location of the router provided by your ISP.

On the other hand, a proxy works like a glove with different fingerprints on it. It leaves different traces that lead to different information, thus making you untraceable.

Let’s see where this anonymity provides the most benefits.

Bypassing blocks

For whatever reason you might end up blocked on any site, that block works on you by identifying your IP address and blocking it.

For instance, if you are using multiple accounts on social media and they all share the same IP address, it’s obvious that you are the user of all these accounts. If having too many goes against the site’s Terms of Service, your accounts or even IP address will be blocked. This will disable your access to all your accounts and even to the site.

Using a proxy solves this issue. By disguising your original IP address and using a multitude of other IPs, you leave no mark that these different accounts belong to one user unless you leave other marks on these accounts such as identical content.

Not only can you avoid getting blocked with proxies, but you can recover the access that has been blocked already. If you are marked as an unwanted user and end up blocked on a certain site, a different IP indicates that you are a different user, making the block irrelevant to you.

Social marketing

Social media is useful for extracting data about people’s buying decisions, patterns of their preferences, and tendencies of their behavior. However, by many, it is seen as unacceptable spying. Lots of restrictions are being laid on such marketing.

Especially, if you are using additional tools (bots, for example) that provide you with advantages inaccessible to regular users, the range of your free activity shrinks.

When your primary business on the internet consists of activities prone to restriction, such as data harvesting, extensive social media marketing, or whatnot, you are at risk of getting blacklisted.

Proxies make your different tasks look regular and not too suspicious because different things are done with different IP addresses. The excessiveness of your activity can’t be identified if it resolves into different fragments that have different IPs. You can’t be blamed for spying or doing anything irregular if a single IP address leaves a trace of only a few cases of doing that.

Using bots

Bots are automation tools that are used everywhere on the internet. Likewise, they are unwanted everywhere and at risk of getting blocked. Since they use the IP address of their user, blocking bots is usually followed by restricting or blocking their user.

Proxies can provide IP addresses for all your bots, making them not linked to each other or you. They all seem like different users with different IP addresses. If they change constantly, none of the bot’s activity can seem suspicious and reveal its automatic nature.

It provides triple security:

  • Your bots are more difficult to identify.
  • If one of your bots gets identified, it doesn’t compromise other bots because it has a different IP address than its counterparts.
  • Even if your different bots are identified and blocked, they leave no mark of you as their original user because your IP address doesn’t match with any of theirs.

Sneaker copping

Buying multiple sneakers, collecting, or reselling them is a growing niche where proxies are massively used. You can even find businesses such as Proxydrop that focus on providing proxies for this specific field.

Many stores have a policy that doesn’t allow their customers to exceed the limit of purchases of certain merchandise. Any effort to bypass the limit is punished by blacklisting that customer.

Like in other cases, proxies make you look each time as a different customer with a different IP address, allowing you to make lots of different accounts and buy what you want without fear of getting blocked or your purchase rejected.

Besides, sneaker copping heavily relies on using bots that provide significant speed in automating purchases and allowing them to surpass the competitors that are busting their guts for those remaining sneakers. As mentioned before, bots are significantly enhanced by using proxies.

Not to mention, they allow avoiding CAPTCHA check-ups that bots usually struggle to bypass.

Accessing geo-restricted content

Websites are being blocked in different countries or regions based on IP addresses. For instance, China blocks most social networks. However, its residents can circumvent this block by using proxies.

They provide you with IP addresses that indicate locations in different countries where the blockage doesn’t apply. Therefore, your real location becomes irrelevant to what you can access on the internet.

Moreover, different ads or even different pricing depends on the region. Using a proxy with an IP address that indicates the location in that country allows you to see this geo-restricted content. It’s especially useful for snooping on your competitors or accessing merchandise at a lower price.

Final thoughts

Proxies are used for ensuring anonymity and securing uninterrupted and safe work throughout many different fields for businesses and individuals alike. This kind of anonymity and safety is not something only abstractly useful. It’s rather a particular tool to recover blocked accounts or sites, bypass certain blocks or restrictions, freely use automation tools without limits and boost both speed and efficiency of online marketing, scraping, or copping.