How Anonymous Proxy Sites Protect Your Anonymity
The web is full of all sorts of anonymous proxy sites, web based, socks proxies, transparent proxies and many, many more. People use them to protect their anonymity and shield their IP address, but the simple truth is that these people would probably be safer not using a proxy at all.
Let me give you a very simple analogy for using a proxy server – it’s exactly the same as taking all the letters that you write and instead of posting them giving them to a stranger on the street and asking them to post them for you ! Will he send them? Will he read them first then send them? Well using a proxy is exactly the same you are sending ALL your Web traffic to one server (the proxy) and asking that server to forward all your requests and replies.
The next important point to make that the vast majority of the data you send and receive from your web browser is in clear text, this is because it uses HTTP to send and receive data and HTTP operates in ascii text. That is to say it is all completely readable to anyone who happens to intercept the data stream like the admin of the proxy server maybe.
These anonymous proxies that you find for free on the internet are generally left open either by accident or by hackers compromising the servers and using them as free proxies. Either way would you want all your personal data going through this one server, it’s a huge security risk especially as you probably know nothing about the origin of the proxy server.
Now don’t get me wrong an anonymous proxy is a part of the puzzle of safe browsing but it is only part and if you use a hacked server your taking a huge risk. The anonymous proxy will stop your IP address being logged in the web server you visit though so it does have a use.
If you have access to a fast anonymous proxy which you know well and know who controls it, then great go and use it. You’ll rarely find these for free on the internet though as they will invariably get abused and run very slowly when thousands steal the bandwidth.
Otherwise I suggest not using a proxy at all or paying for the use of a fast secure private proxy or perhaps a solution that is much, much, more than these simple anonymous proxy sites.