Proxies are a great way to add a layer of privacy and security between you and the internet at large. If you want the highest level of security, VPN services are generally recommended as the best and the most secure option. However, there are also quite a few reasons to use a browser proxy. In this article, we’ll discuss the main things you should know about Chrome proxies and how to set one up.
What is a Proxy Anyway?
Essentially, every proxy acts as an intermediary between your device and the internet. Every time you try to open a website or access other web services, your device sends a request to a server. Typically, the server receives your IP address which can be used to identify you. However, when you’re using a proxy, your request is routed through the proxy server first, which, from the perspective of the end server, changes your IP address. The result is a higher level of anonymity. And if you want the best anonymity from proxy services, be sure to choose one that in addition to hiding your IP, also encrypts your traffic.
Why Use a Chrome Proxy
Using a proxy for a specific application, such as Chrome, has the main advantage of allowing you to configure it the way you want it just for this one application. Moreover, you could also use another proxy provider or server on a different browser, like Firefox. So in case, you don’t need system-wide anonymity and only want to mask your traffic on Chrome, just set up the proxy and your good to go.
Why do people use Chrome proxies? In most cases, they are used either to anonymize traffic or to unblock geo-restricted content. For example, you could use it to access Netflix content that’s not available in your region. The same goes for Youtube and other content sites.
There are also some risks associated with not using a Chrome proxy and if you’d like to read more on it, be sure to check out this post.
Easily Set Up a Chrome Proxy Extension
Setting up a Chrome proxy is very easy. Using Chrome extensions is very popular as they do all the work without any need for manual configuration. Just head on to the Chrome Web Store and choose an extension.
However, one should also be careful. Since proxy servers route the users’ traffic, they are also able to monitor what they browse. Most free proxy providers may sell this data to 3rd parties, and it’s nearly impossible to know in whose hands it will actually end up. For this reason, we recommend either choosing a paid service or researching the free proxy provider before making a decision.
Set Up a Chrome Proxy Manually
Now, if instead of using an extension, you have your proxy server configuration info, the process is quite a bit different. However, it is also not complicated if you know the right steps. When you want to configure your browser to use the same proxy server automatically each time, these are the steps:
1) First, open up settings by clicking the rightmost three-dot icon.
2) Then, scroll all the way down where you’ll find an option to open advanced settings.
3) Continue to scroll down until you find the button to open your OS proxy settings and click on it.
4) Since the next steps depend on which OS you use and its version, so if you’re a Mac user, head on to Apple’s official support page to find out more.
And if you use Windows, this guide is very helpful.
All in all, setting up a proxy for your Chrome browser is much easier than it may seem at first. Not only does it provide a certain level of anonymity, but it can also help you access content that you couldn’t get to otherwise.