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A proxy server provides an invaluable service to computer users by acting as an intermediary between a user requesting service or access and another resource, typically the Internet. Proxy servers compare the request to filters within their system to determine if the request is valid. If it is, they connect the requester with the page or application requested. You can find a free proxy server to use but their services may be less than spectacular. The pricier services of a paid anonymous proxy service are more reliable. You can also get proxy service with software. To use proxy software, you will need to pay a license fee for each user on the system.
What does the proxy server actually do? In addition to providing access to outside resources, proxy servers hide the identity of your IP address giving you added security. They speed up access time between you and the Internet. It can scan transmitted content for malware and check outgoing transmissions for data leaks. There are several types of proxies, the forward, open and reverse proxies, each with their own specific advantages.
Your own IT staff can help you determine which is best for you or you can use the services of consultants. Many manufacturers have support staff that can help you determine which system is right for you.
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