A proxy has several definitions; however, this definition will be limited to how the word proxy is used in computer sciences and Internet sciences. Ten years ago the word proxy would not appear by itself when used in a computer context. It would have always appeared with the word server as in Proxy Server. In today’s world, proxy and proxy server mean the same thing.
A proxy server is part of a computer network, either another computer or an application, acts a a go-between for computers that communicate with other computers. A network may exist between a home computer, the proxy, and the Internet, or it may be a link that is shared between two home computers on a home network. A network can also exist within a company and those networks are often called Intranet instead of Internet.
For the basic rule of thumb, a proxy is any computer that relays information between two or more computers.
In the case of Internet security, a proxy or proxy server is used to hide ones IP Address, to set up anonymous E-mail, and to send information securely over the Internet. Hidemyass.com is an example of a Proxy and a Proxy Service.
To illustrate what a proxy does, we have included the picture above. A proxy is a remarkable tool that has gained popularity as Internet technology continues to change. A proxy and a proxy server can also be considered Internet security tools. Both allow computers to access the Internet with a certain amount of protection. That protection is often called a false IP Address. In terms of security, the proxy issues a false IP Address to each computer that connect to the Internet through the proxy or proxy server. The false IP Address allows the computer to surf the Internet without having to provide all of the personal data that is normally shared when a computer connects to the Internet without using a proxy or a proxy server.