These days, the internet has become indispensable for our everyday routine. Whether it is virtual assistants calculating your work commute for you or your daily virtual planner updating your tasks for the day ahead, the internet is something we all cannot shy away from.
The Internet has also become a huge part of our lives as it contains all the information about us, from our personal preferences to banking details and transaction histories. It is why concerns about online privacy and data security have recently intensified.
VPNs and Proxies are tools that hide your IP address and encrypt the internet traffic, making it almost impossible for anyone to snoop on your online activities. This article elaborates on the differences between these two internet security options and further enlightens about which is better to be used on Windows.
What is a VPN?
Before delving into the differences, let us briefly overview what VPN and proxy are.
VPN, short for Virtual Private Network, connects your computer to the internet via a secure network. It works magic by encrypting all the data between your computer and the server.
When you connect to the internet via a VPN server, your internet traffic is rerouted through an encrypted tunnel, making it almost impossible for anyone to snoop or monitor your online activities.
What is a Proxy?
Compared to VPNs, a proxy server acts as an intermediary server that relays information between your computer and the internet. It essentially acts as a gateway, forwarding your internet traffic to its destination.
The biggest differentiating point about a proxy is that, though it can hide your IP address and mask your online identity, it does not encrypt your internet traffic. Proxy is often used to bypass content filters and access blocked websites, but it lacks in providing data encryption.
VPN vs. Proxy: What are the Differences?
- Security: A VPN provides end-to-end encryption between your device and the internet, while a proxy does not. It implies that a VPN can keep your online activities private, while a proxy only masks your IP address.
- Privacy: VPNs offer more privacy than proxies by providing an encrypted tunnel that shields your online activities from your internet service provider (ISP) and other third-party snoopers. Conversely, a proxy only hides your IP address but does not encrypt your online activities.
- Location Spoofing: A VPN can change your IP address to any location with servers, while a proxy may have limited locations to choose from.
- Speed: Proxies are generally faster than VPNs, as they do not encrypt your internet traffic. However, this speed advantage comes at the cost of security and privacy.
- Usage: VPNs are ideal for people wanting to protect their online activities from prying eyes, such as hackers, government agencies, and ISPs. Proxies are useful for people who want to hide their IP address for basic online activities, such as browsing the web or accessing region-restricted content.
Which is the Best Option to Use on Windows?
If you are looking for the highest level of security and privacy, a VPN for Windows is the best option. VPNs encrypt all your internet traffic, making it almost impossible for anyone to intercept or monitor your online activities. They also offer more features and better customer support than proxies.
Moreover, VPNs are easy to set up on Windows. Most VPN providers offer dedicated Windows apps you can download and install on your device. Once installed, you can connect to a VPN server with a single click and browse the web securely and privately.
When choosing a VPN for Windows, many options are available, such as Ivacy VPN. It offers fast speeds, a wide range of server locations, and easy-to-use apps for Windows. With so many VPN options, you can easily find one that meets your needs and budget.