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A couple of decades ago before we started to spend half our lives online, proxies were of little interest to most people. They were used primarily in corporate and educational networks to serve as gateways initially to applications and later to internet access.
A standard configuration would have something like a proxy server address set on every PC in a network. It would be effectively the default gateway to route all external traffic, in practice it allowed internet access to be controlled, monitored and secured.
One of the most common ways to apply these setting was to deploy via a browser configuration. If you look at most modern corporate network PCs they will have a proxy server(the company’s default gateway) hard coded. This ensures that all internet based traffic follows the same route which cannot be changed.
This is still an extremely common configuration however proxies are now used in lots of other scenarios too including often by home users. Sometimes they are used to provide a level of privacy for personal reasons or as a means to facilitate money making operations online.
Using Multiple Identities Online
There are obviously lots of ways to make money online however many rely on the ability to create and use multiple connections. For example imagine you can buy a specific product online which you can easily sell for a 200% profit instantly. This sounds like a perfect money making situation, however there’s a catch you can only buy one of these products at a time.
Similar to the ‘only one purchase’ per household promotions, many limited release items sold on the internet are restricted in order to protect their values and create a scarcity factor. A perfect example of these is the market for designer trainers or sneakers as they’re known as in the US. These are released periodically by big companies like Supreme, Nike and Adidas and are always over subscribed and purchases limited.
So here’s the dilemma, every time there’s a new release you know you can resell any of these sneakers at a huge profit. However obviously buying only one pair each time is going to severely limit your potential profit – how can you buy more?
Well in a normal physical store you could send friends and family or perhaps don a variety of disguises and visit the shop over and over again making multiple purchases. However that’s not going to work on an eCommerce store where most of these releases take place. Obviously you can still enlist friends to make purchases on your behalf from their own computers but these releases are very competitive and often sell out in minutes. So there’s often a very small window of opportunity to make these purchases. Yet how on earth can you disguise your computer and internet connection from these automated stores?
It is of course, much easier to identify a duplicate purchase online. Every computer or device on the internet has a unique identifier known as the IP (internet protocol) address.
All these servers need to do is make a note of each IP address which makes a purchase and block all subsequent attempts to buy. It’s extremely easy to do and effectively blocks people from buying more than once or making multiple connections.
It’s like having a big sign around your neck, it’s difficult to hide and the server will be able to spot you instantly.
What are Rotating Proxies and How Can They Make Money!
So if an IP address is unique, is also essential to have – then how can we don a digital disguise? The problem is further complicated by the fact that you can’t change your IP address as it’s assigned directly from your internet service provider. However there is a solution which involves using proxies to create multiple, distinct identities. You use proxy servers to act as your gateway onto the internet, which effectively hides your real identity from the websites you visit. Unfortunately it can be a little more complicated than that, if you’ve ever tried to buy proxies for a certain task you’ll know what I mean!
If you search online for a few minutes you’ll likely find the following terms –
- dedicated proxies
- static residential proxies
- residential backconnect proxies
- dedicated proxies for sneakers
and many, many more! It seems that there’s a different type of proxy for every conceivable task, and worse if you choose the wrong one you’re finished. However this is not exactly true and it often sounds much more complicated than it is. Also many of these roles are almost identical and you can actually buy rotating proxies that fulfill a myriad of tasks.
So when you visit a website, it sees the IP address of the proxy server and not your real one. Not only does this keep you completely hidden, it also has the potential to maintain multiple IP addresses and digital identities. If the proxy server is correctly configured it can be used to rotate through multiple addresses automatically, making your own connection appear to belong to multiple different people. These are called rotating proxies and they can use a proxy pool of addresses in order to hide your real IP address. Most can be configured to switch automatically or after each HTTP request meaning the address only changes after each web session is completed.
So with rotating proxies you can effectively control multiple connections from the same machine sitting from the one computer. However the real professionals go a step further in the pursuit of profit, by combining a rotating proxy with software to automate the buying process too. This is because although you can hide your address by using these proxies you’re still faced with the problem of buying the merchandise. Most limited release products and services sell out very quickly and if you’re not quick you’ll lose out. The professionals use software configured to make these purchases automatically, faster than any human being can do.
For example with regards limited edition sneakers, there’s a whole market of dedicated sneaker bots which can make these purchases for you. Here’s an example picture of a popular one called Soleslayer.
It’s basically a piece of software with one specific purpose to buy sneakers as quickly as possible from the various sneaker eCommerce sites. There are loads of different versions for different sites and variants which buy other things like tickets for concerts and popular sporting events. All of them designed to make as many fast purchases as possible without getting blocked or restricted. All of them can use proxies in order to hide your IP address, indeed they won’t really work properly unless you have some rotating proxies.
If you search online there’s loads of these for all sorts of sectors, mostly referred to as Bots. They don’t do anything that clever, simply automating the purchase steps, although some have become increasingly sophisticated in order to avoid detection. Many people and companies use them to buy up huge quantities of stock and resell them on sites like eBay at huge profits. Ticket reseller companies also extensively use technology like this to gain access to concert tickets as well.
The use of this technology is not confined to large marketing firms however. The Bots themselves are pretty easy to use and available for a few hundred dollars each. Proxies used to be expensive especially those with the residential IP addresses usually required to make purchases, however that has changed over the last couple of years. Rotating proxies have brought down the unit costs of these addresses and you can get subscriptions with access to thousands of IP addresses fairly cheaply. Take for example the plans available at Storm Proxies who have been selling access to these sort of inexpensive plans for many years – you can browse their options here.