What is the Best Proxy Service to Bypass Geo-Restrictions?

When you’re browsing VPN options, the term ‘proxy servers’ will likely crop up from time to time. VPNs and the best Proxy Server have the same functions in common but differ in how effective they are. The purpose of both systems is to change the location your browser registers when you connect to the web. This gives you a level of anonymity when using the internet, as you can hide the real location from which you’re browsing, and by doing so withhold your identity. How they achieve this, however, varies dramatically.

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What’s a proxy?

When using the best proxy service, you are allowing a program to work as a go-between for the internet and your device. Like a VPN, a proxy server alters your IP address, which hides your actual location and changes it to somewhere else. This can be a useful tool if you want to access online materials that aren’t available in your country. You can access a site through a proxy server and it will be tricked into thinking you’re in the right country. There is very little encryption or risk associated with an action like this.

You might also want to use this feature for finding more affordable prices for your online purchases. Plane tickets, for example, can be found considerably cheaper by spoofing the site into thinking you’re accessing from a different country.

When it comes to using a proxy server, you will probably need to set up additional applications (such as different browsers, torrenting clients, etc.) to work with the proxy. This differs from a VPN. Once you’ve installed it, a VPN works across all applications and browsers automatically.

As mentioned before, using a proxy server does not involve any encryption of your information. Creating a false IP address hides your location, but there is still the risk that your private information could be compromised. On the contrary, a reputable VPN will always include security and privacy options as part of the service. If you’re accessing the internet via WiFi, it’s usually advisable to make use of a VPN rather than a proxy. Certain plugins like Flash or programming languages like Javascript can see through a proxy server’s attempts to hide your IP address and are often recognized by sites that can easily block you until you cease using the proxy.

We will talk a bit more about proxies and then take a look at our top proxy server list.

Proxy Server Protocols: HTTP and SOCKS

Proxy servers operate using either HTTP or SOCKS protocols. Which is the best proxy option for you?

HTTP Proxies

HTTP proxies have been around longer than SOCKS, and are used for handling HTTP-only web traffic.

To begin using an HTTP proxy, you need to connect the proxy server and the config file of your chosen web browser. Then, all traffic will reach you through the proxy, which is remote. There may be a browser extension available to allow proxy support in your browser.

To keep your information safe, especially when doing things like online banking or password forms for emails, social media, etc., you need to be sure that your data is protected. Do this by making sure SSL is enabled in your browser and only access websites that are marked ‘Secure’. This means that the site encrypts your information, protecting it from being stolen by a hacker or criminal group. Even the best proxy server is not designed to encrypt your information – no matter how sensitive – so you need to keep your details safe by other means.

SOCKS Proxies

Evolved from HTTP proxies, SOCKS proxies can process all types of information – not just HTTP web traffic. This means that a SOCKS proxy can be used for downloading torrents, accessing media in other countries and other activities that an HTTP proxy can’t handle.

The downside of using a SOCKS proxy is that it takes considerably longer to process the information.

How to Choose the Best Proxy Service

It’s a good idea to shop around when looking for the best VPN, and the same applies when finding the best proxy service to fit your requirements. If you search for the best proxy servers online, you’ll likely come across a whole host of free options. While these might be appealing, especially for first-time proxy users, it’s a much better idea to find a paid version.

Proxies that you pay for will be more reliable, secure and safe to use – they’re well worth the money. These are reputable companies that have more to lose than their free alternatives. Free proxy servers are often full of annoying ads, take ages to process information and are peppered with threats to your privacy and computer health. Free proxy services can even be the mask for a team of criminals who want your details and will hover until they have your most valuable sensitive information, like your banking passwords or card numbers.

The Best Proxy Server – As Recommended By Us

Some of the best proxy services are available through providers known for their quality VPNs. It’s a safe way to ensure you’re getting a trustworthy and effective product. Sometimes a proxy will be included as part of your VPN service; other times it will be a separate service of its own.

Here is our definitive top proxy server list, as recommended by us experts. We’ve included the best features of each proxy so you can find the right one for you.

Best All Round 1 ExpressVPN
9.8
More details + 70% of our followers choose ExpressVPN
100% money-back guarantee, no questions asked
ExpressVPN review: Excellent!
ExpressVPN is a complete VPN solution that meets diverse needs. It is suitable for all those who need an easy-to-use VPN to watch streaming TV and download torrents on all their devices without limits. You'll get what you pay for!
Privacy and security
10
Features
10
Speed and Performance
10
Value for money
9
Ease of use
10
PROS:
  • High-speed connection
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Wide selection of countries
  • Military grade encryption
  • Zero logs
  • User-friendly setup and use
  • Unlimited streaming and torrenting
  • 24/7 live chat support
  • Money-back guarantee
  • Exclusive deal: 3 months free!
CONS:
  • Few settings
  • No NAT firewall
  • No IP binding
Best Value 2 NordVPN
9.6
Check latest pricing Go to NordVPN
Read full review
More details + Money-back guarantee available, but with conditions
NordVPN Review: Excellent
NordVPN is a young VPN with a lot of potential. It is suitable for all those who need an easy-to-use and secure VPN: To fight censorship, to watch streaming TV and to download torrents and Peer to Peer. Subscribe for 1 or 2 years to get the best price.
Privacy and security
9
Features
8
Speed and Performance
8
Value for money
10
Ease of use
10
PROS:
  • High speed connection
  • NAT Firewall
  • Native app for iPhone and Android
  • 6 simultaneous devices
  • User friendly
  • No log policy and torrent friendly
CONS:
  • Monthly subscription is too expensive
  • Manual setup only for PPTP/L2TP
User Friendly 3 Private Internet Access Review
9.4
Check latest pricing Go to PIA
Read full review
Private Internet Access review: Good
PIA is a reliable and affordable VPN solution. It is suitable for all those who need an easy-to-use VPN to surf anonymously, watch streaming TV and download torrents on all their devices without limits. And the
Value for money
9
Ease of use
8
Accessibility
9
Supported devices
8
Covered countries
7
VPN for IOS
9
VPN for Android
9
PROS:
  • High speed connection
  • Native app for iPhone and Android
  • P2P and BitTorrent allowed, with no logs
  • SOCKS 5 proxy included
CONS:
  • Few covered countries
  • Interface could be better
4 CyberGhost VPN
9.2
More details + Money-back guarantee available, but with conditions
CyberGhost Review: Good
CyberGhost is a reliable VPN solution, focused on your privacy. It is suitable for all those who need an easy-to-use VPN to surf and torrent anonymously and watch streaming TV without limits. Multi login package is a bit expensive.
Privacy and security
10
Features
9
Speed and Performance
10
Value for money
9
Ease of use
10
PROS:
  • High speed
  • Native apps for iPhone and Android
  • P2P and BitTorrent allowed, with no logs
  • User friendly
CONS:
  • No IPv6 leak protection
  • No built-in firewall (NAT firewall)
  • No IP binding
5 Surfshark VPN
9
More details + Money-back guarantee available, but with conditions
Value for money
9
Ease of use
10
Accessibility
8
Supported devices
10
Covered countries
9
PROS:
  • High-speed
  • User-friendly
  • No logs
  • Torrent-friendly
  • Compatible with US Netflix
  • Affordable
CONS:
  • Newcomer
  • No IP leak protection settings

Conclusion

We hope you’ve found our top proxy server list helpful in making your decision. Stay safe while using the internet, whether you’re using a proxy or a VPN, by always doing your research and finding the best option for your device and operating system. When it comes to your online security, it pays to go the extra mile.

Thomas

I love to spend my time on the internet - preferably day and night. And I love my job – I’m a computer and security expert. As an author of this website, I can give free rein to my passion: Writing about essential topics like data security and encrypted connections. I also like to get my hands on the newest products and software, to try them and to share my feedback with our readers.

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