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Distorting Proxies and How They Work: Understanding the Basics

The internet is full of threats, and cybercriminals are always on the lookout for new ways to steal data, infiltrate networks, and compromise online security. Many individuals and businesses turn to proxies to protect their identities and maintain their privacy.

Carl Gamutan

by Carl Gamutan

Publishing Date: March 22, 2023

Distorting Proxies and Their Role in Online Security

Distorting proxies are a type of proxy server that changes the IP address of the user while hiding their real IP address. They are called distorting proxies because they distort or alter the user's IP address, making it difficult to trace their online activity.

Unlike other types of proxies, such as transparent and anonymous proxies, distorting proxies not only hide the IP address but also provide incorrect location information. This makes it harder for websites, servers, and other online services to track the user's location and activity.

If you want to learn more about anonymity-based proxies, you can check out our blog all about it!

How Distorting Proxies Work

Distorting proxies work by rerouting internet traffic through a third-party server. When a user sends a request to access a website or online service, the request is first intercepted by the distorting proxy server. The proxy server then masks the user's IP address by replacing it with a new IP address, which is usually from a different location.

In addition to changing the IP address, the proxy server also alters other identifying information, such as browser type, operating system, and device type. This makes it difficult for websites and online services to determine the user's true identity.

Benefits of Using Distorting Proxies

There are several benefits of using distorting proxies, including:

Bypassing Regional Restrictions. One of the main advantages of distorting proxies is their ability to bypass regional restrictions. This can be useful for accessing content that is geographically restricted, such as streaming services or websites that are blocked in certain countries.

By using a distorting proxy with an IP address from a different location, users can access content that would otherwise be unavailable.

Improving Web Scraping Capabilities. Distorting proxies can also be useful for web scraping, which involves automatically extracting data from websites.

By using multiple distorting proxies with different IP addresses, web scrapers can avoid being detected and blocked by websites that limit or block traffic from a single IP address. This can help improve the reliability and accuracy of web scraping results.

Protecting Online Privacy and Security. Distorting proxies can also help protect users' online privacy and security. By hiding the user's IP address, distorting proxies make it more difficult for websites to track their online activities and identify their location.

This can help prevent unwanted tracking and surveillance, as well as protect against cyberattacks and other online threats.

Improving Internet Speed and Performance. In some cases, using a distorting proxy can also improve internet speed and performance. This is because the proxy server can cache frequently requested data, reducing the amount of time it takes to load web pages and other online content.

Additionally, by connecting to a proxy server with a faster internet connection, users may experience faster download and upload speeds.

Enhancing Online Anonymity. Finally, distorting proxies can help enhance users' online anonymity. By concealing the user's IP address and other identifying information, distorting proxies makes it more difficult for websites and other online entities to track their online activities. This can help protect users' privacy and prevent them from being targeted by online tracking and surveillance.

Types of Distorting Proxies

There are several types of distorting proxies available, including:

Rotating Proxies: Rotating proxies change the IP address after a specified time interval or after each request. This makes it difficult for websites to detect and block the proxy.

Residential Proxies: Residential proxies use IP addresses that are assigned to actual residential homes, making them more difficult to detect and block.

Datacenter Proxies: Datacenter proxies use IP addresses from data centers, which are easier to detect and block. However, they are faster and more affordable than residential proxies.


Distorting proxies are a popular tool for enhancing online privacy, security, and access to geo-restricted content. They work by changing the user's IP address and other identifying information to mask their online activity.

While there are several types of distorting proxies available, users should choose a reputable provider to avoid potential risks. Overall, distorting proxies offer an effective solution for maintaining online anonymity and security in an increasingly dangerous online environment.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are distorting proxies legal?

Yes, using distorting proxies is legal in most countries. However, they should not be used for illegal activities or to violate the terms of service of online services.

Can distorting proxies be detected?

Yes, distorting proxies can be detected by websites and online services. However, it is more difficult to detect distorting proxies compared to other types of proxies.

Are distorting proxies safe?

Using distorting proxies can enhance online security and protect user privacy. However, users should choose reputable proxy providers to avoid potential risks associated with using unreliable proxies.

How do I choose a distorting proxy provider?

When selecting a distorting proxy provider, users should consider factors such as reliability, speed, location coverage, and customer support. It is also important to read reviews and compare prices before making a decision. Check out Geonode’s residential proxy service if you want a reliable proxy provider!

Can distorting proxies improve internet speed and performance?

In some cases, using a distorting proxy can improve internet speed and performance by caching frequently requested data and connecting to a proxy server with a faster internet connection.

Are there any downsides to using distorting proxies?

One potential downside of using distorting proxies is that they can slow down internet speed and performance if the proxy server is overloaded or located far from the user's location.

Additionally, using a distorting proxy may require additional setup and configuration compared to simply connecting to the internet directly.