Table of Contents

Comment Icon0 While there are online services that behave similarly to proxy servers, dedicated proxy servers would provide a more reliable online experience than exploiting security loopholes to traverse the Internet. Individuals as well as organizations use proxy servers for a variety of reasons, including security, anonymity, caching and filtering. There are publicly-open as well as privately-closed proxy servers available for use, depending on the capabilities of the Internet user.

Comment Icon0 Publicly-open proxies are servers that are left open for connections from remote computers, where they could be either intentionally or be accidentally left open to allow public access. There are online listings of open proxy servers, though their individual reliability is often in question (e.g., http://www.samair.ru/proxy/). Since Internet users are unlikely to know the open proxy owner’s identity, there is very little security while using them. As such, this mode of circumvention is ideal for temporary, non-critical information access. For users willing to take the risk of using open proxies, they must configure the settings of their web browser with the IP address or hostname of the proxy server, as well as the port number that the proxy server is running on.

Comment Icon0 Privately set-up closed proxy servers requires a trustworthy and technically proficient friend living overseas from mainland China. That particular overseas contact would then install proxy server software in his or her own web server, such as Squid (http://www.squid-cache.org) or Privoxy (http://www.privoxy.org). After that, Internet users within the filtered PRC would have to configure their web browsers to connect to the Internet through their contact’s overseas proxy server. While not the most stealthy circumvention solution, private proxy servers are a more robust solution than a web-based proxy system, offering seamless connections with websites that require authentication and browser cookies such as web-based email services. As such, this is a better long-term solution for circumventing the Internet filters compared to the open proxy approach.

Comment Icon0 While the procedures for both open and closed server vary in level of difficulty, they still require end-users to be able to configure their own individual computers. Depending on the security levels of their means of access, it might not be possible to change the web browser settings in public Internet terminals such as at Internet cafes and school libraries.

Chapter 7.3.4 – Dedicated Proxy Servers

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