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VPN vs. Proxy: What’s The Difference And Which One Is Better?

There’s constant argument across the world of the internet as to whether Virtual Private Networks are the better choice than proxy servers for browsing security, or whether the opposite is true. The debate has been going on ever since VPNs appeared on the market and began to completely take it over. The two have a similar purpose, so why the argument? And which one really is best?

What Are VPNs And Proxy Servers?

Both VPNs and proxy servers are designed to conceal your identity as you browse the internet and grant you access to websites that may previously have been blocked for you. The two types of service both aim to do this, but they do so in very different ways. The difference lies in the process used to hide your identity, which leads to different outcomes and consequences.

What Is Good And Bad About A Proxy Server?

A proxy server is a physical computer that acts as an intermediary between the internet and your own, personal computer. The system is designed to make it appear as though any internet traffic that comes from you is actually coming from the intermediary computer. It does not encrypt your data. Some can only interpret web pages, while others can handle any traffic at all but are usually slower. The former are usually cheap and will hide your IP address on a basic level, but can easily be circumvented by clever use of Flash or JavaScript and your browser must be configured to be able to use it. The latter is flexible but slow and all the software you wish to use must be configured. The biggest disadvantage of all proxy servers, however, is that your identity can easily be discovered if a third party really wants to know it, because your data is not encrypted.

Personal VPN

What Is Good And Bad About A VPN?

Unlike a proxy server, a VPN goes the extra step to encrypt your data. It creates a tunnel between a server and your computer and makes sure that any information travelling through this tunnel is almost impossible to crack. Any activity you perform using this tunnel is completely invisible to a third party, while your IP address is again replaced with a fake one. It’s a bit more expensive and can occasionally be slow, and if the VPN service provider keeps logs they can be  accessed by subpoena, but a VPN has many advantages. Your internet activity cannot be watched and your data is much safer.

Which Should I Choose?

Really, the only possible reason not to choose a VPN is the price, which is higher than for a proxy server. All other considerations put VPNs way out ahead of proxy servers and place them as the most secure alternative. Our experts have identified the very best services on the market for you in the comparison table below:

Rank Provider
Starting Price MoneyBack
Visit Website
ExpressVPN $8.32/month 30 Days visit expressvpn site
2 VyprVPN $14.95/month 7 Days visit vyprvpn site
3 IPVanish $10.00/month 7 Days visit IPvanish Site
4 Hidemyass $6.55/month 30 Days visit Hidemyass site
5 StrongVPN $21/ 3 Months 7 Days visit strongvpn site
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