In this digital age, waking up to discover some new technology can help your business succeed is a common experience. Innovations constantly spring up everywhere you look and it’s pretty hard to keep up with the constant progression of technology to determine which technology you should adopt and when that technology is stable enough to help your business. It’s like when social media first launched and you were the only business it seemed wasn’t using this new marketing tool or wasn’t getting the results you wanted from the new marketing channel. You’re not alone in feeling a little lost about adopting technology but we’re here to help. Today, we want to discuss why your company needs a proxy server to help improve your business by making your internet connections more stable and more secure.
A proxy server is one of the new technologies available to help your business and, by extension, protect your customers. Before learning why getting a proxy server is such a good idea, let’s briefly discuss what it is.
What is a proxy server?
A proxy is something that stands in for something else. In this case, the server acts to disguise things like your IP address to make it harder for others to track you around the internet. Simply put, a proxy server is a system that stands between an end-user and the internet. It is frequently referred to as an intermediary because of its job as a go-between for end-users and the websites they visit.
Proxy servers are often mistaken for virtual private networks (VPNs). They do share similarities as both proxies and VPNs allow a user to surf the internet using external servers. However, while VPNs encrypt web traffic sent from your network, proxies redirect that traffic and thus offer more speed as well as security.
Proxies come in either hardware or software forms. As the name implies, hardware versions involve installing a physical proxy server to sit between your network and the internet, receiving, assessing, sending, and forwarding requests. The software version is a much simpler solution. They are offered by proxy providers such as IPRoyal.com.
Depending on the plans made available by the provider, you can get a software proxy server for free. However, this would mean you had limited capabilities. Paid proxies, on the other hand, can meet all your business needs. However, you still need to carry out due diligence to know your exact requirements before deciding which type of proxy is best for you and determining which company should provide this service (or hardware). Alternatively, you can consult proxy providers for guidance on which to choose.
How will your company benefit from a proxy server?
Let’s get to the crux of the matter: how proxy servers can help your business meet its goals.
1. Ensures proper internet usage by employees
Proxy servers are a great way to ensure that your employees focus more on their work. It’s a common practice among big companies to restrict social media sites like Facebook and other time-wasters that serve as a distraction to their staff to improve productivity as well as lessen the chances of introducing inadvertent vulnerabilities.
Also, you can prevent your employees from accessing unsecured sites that not only spread malware to your devices but also steal valuable information from your company. By employing proxy services, you can regulate the devices that have access to your network and, more importantly, the sites they visit. It’s a small price to pay to protect the integrity of your company, don’t you think?
2. Regulates web traffic to prevent crashes
Constant uptime is an absolute must if you don’t want to see your customer satisfaction scores plummet. When not managed properly, web traffic clogs your system and interferes with customers’ and potential customers’ access to your website. When these valuable visitors can’t access your website quickly or face spotty access, they simply switch to another of the many options out there to meet their needs.
Ideally, the entirety of your website’s data lies on a web server. When you bring a proxy server into the mix, this same load is shared across different servers spread across the globe. This way, your site can seamlessly handle large amounts of requests from customers meaning you increase the capacity of your website to meet customer demand.
The proxy server acts as a single access point for all the different servers and balances the requests so that none get overloaded.
3. Faster network speeds and increased bandwidth
As we learned earlier, proxies distribute your data across different servers and manage customer requests more efficiently. This may seem like a lot of work, so one might think that it comes at the expense of speed. However, it’s quite the opposite.
Proxy servers not only prevent your server from crashing but can also speed up your network by compressing your files, caching web pages, and blocking ads from showing on websites. This frees up a lot of bandwidth so anyone on your network can enjoy high internet speed. User demands for speed grow more difficult to achieve every year, with a recent study by Forrester Consulting showing that users expect a page to load in only 2 seconds and that 40% of users will wait only 3 seconds before abandoning a website for a competitor.
4. Secures your network
Cybersecurity is one of the major concerns of any company today. After all, history has shown us how costly online breaches are to an organization 00 in 2020, the average cost of a cybersecurity breach was $8.64 million. Losses can either be monetary or result in damage to your public image or both, which increases the cost beyond this number. That’s not the full extent of the damage caused by a data breach – customers affiliated with the organization can also be at risk. With technology so easily accessible today, it’s no surprise that hacking and data breaches are on the rise.
Every computer on your network has an IP address, and so does a proxy server. When your computer connects through a proxy, your IP address remains private because the proxy’s IP address shows up instead of your device’s. All information received and sent to the internet is done through the proxy server. As a result, hackers can only get to the proxy server at most, while your main server, where your data is stored, remains safe and inaccessible.
Thus, proxy servers, although not providing 100% protection, can safeguard a company from cyber-attacks to a reasonable extent. They reduce the chances of a breach by serving as an additional protective layer between your web servers and the outside traffic.
5. Enables anonymous activities
As you now see, going under the radar with a proxy server isn’t the only benefit this technology has to offer. Masking your IP address goes beyond unblocking Netflix content from other countries. It is an invaluable tool for any business.
More often than not, a company needs to carry out duties away from the public eye. These activities could range from protecting sensitive data of clients and investors to safeguarding the latest product development from the prying eyes of competitors. It is due to this ability to anonymize web traffic that the likes of reporters, lobbyists, and whistleblowers can’t seem to do without private proxies.
A final word
It’s important to note that while opting to purchase a proxy is a good idea, who you get it from matters as well. Like any other service, there are providers out there who are up to no good. Hence, it’s advisable to place your resources in the hands of third parties that have proven themselves to be trustworthy.
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Hausman and Associates, the publisher of MKT Maven, is a full-service marketing agency operating at the intersection of marketing and digital media. Check out our full range of services.