Last Updated on September 18, 2020
Most businesses are heavy internet users. Unfortunately, the internet is a scary place with all manner of risks for both individuals and businesses. But why is this?
Every time you visit the internet, the target website, or your internet service provider can track your online activities through the IP address, which is like an online identification number.
Just like a personal identification number, you do not give it out to everybody. This is where proxies come in. They help to enhance your online security and privacy. Both residential and datacenter proxies mask your IP address and allow you to conduct online activities anonymously.
So, which is better than the other? It all depends on your specific needs. In this article, we will explore the similarities and differences between the two proxies to help you make an informed decision. But first,
What is a Proxy?
A proxy acts as a middleman that processes internet requests on your behalf. It allows you to access a target website without revealing your real identity.
When using a proxy, the proxy server changes your IP address upon receiving your browsing request. It assigns a new IP that is used to forward your requests. This ensures your IP remains hidden.
There are two main categories of proxies: residential and datacenter proxies. You will come across proxies with many other names, just remember they all fall under the two main categories.
Residential vs Datacenter Proxies
Residential proxies are proxies with a real residential IP address. This means they are attached to an actual physical location, and they are provided by an internet service provider. How do they work?
Every time you browse the internet using a residential proxy, it will leave a footprint of the residential IP address you are using, totally hiding your own.
Datacenter proxies are not attached to a residential IP address. They are private and independent proxies provided by a data center network. They are bought in bulk, giving you a variety of IP addresses to work with.
What are the Similarities Between Residential and Datacenter Proxies?
Masking the IP address
As mentioned earlier, both proxies hide your real IP. They do this by assigning a new IP address every time they receive a browsing request. They use the new IP to forward your request to the target website, and to send the response back to you. This gives you online anonymity.
The internet is a global marketplace. It is important for businesses to access target customers from around the world, from the comfort of their workstation.
Residential and datacenter proxy providers allow you to select proxies based on location. In fact, most reputable proxy providers have thousands of proxies from over 100 countries to choose from.
Your IP address can reveal your personal information. It can reveal your city and even the street. This is a big risk, especially in this era of sophisticated cybercrimes. Both proxies provide online anonymity by ensuring your real IP address is not revealed.
Web scraping is an essential aspect of many businesses. One of the challenges companies face in web scraping is being blocked. Either for sending too many requests from the same IP address or because of geo-restrictions. Both proxies help to avoid blocks and bypass such website restrictions by offering anonymity.
What are the main Residential vs Datacenter proxies differences?
Even though there are many providers for the two proxies, datacenter proxies are easy to find and cheaper while residential proxies are hard to find, and therefore, more expensive.
Residential Proxies are More Legit
Unlike datacenter proxies, residential proxies have a residential IP attached to a real physical address. They are also assigned by internet service providers. This makes them more real and legitimate.
For example, say you send many requests using a residential proxy, and the website owner decides to investigate, they would trace the requests to an internet provider and a residential address. Because of this legitimacy, they are less likely to be blacklisted or blocked.
If you are searching where to buy residential proxies, visit Oxylabs and choose what is the best decision for your business.
A data center network generates datacenter proxies. They are, therefore, not affiliated with an internet provider. This allows them to provide high proxy speeds because they don’t have speed limitations of residential proxies.
Choosing the right proxy can be a daunting task, especially without proper knowledge. The similarities and differences discussed above should help to make a decision. But the good news is, it all comes down to what you need. Is it speed, security, or legitimacy?
Both proxies mask your IP and help to increase your online anonymity. Both proxies are also available from any country in the world, which is crucial for activities like web scraping and digital marketing.
However, residential proxies are more secure and not easily detected. But it does not mean datacenter proxies are not reliable. With a reputable proxy provider, you can enjoy the security and cost efficiency of datacenter proxies.