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Understanding Identity Attacks: Proxy Servers

written by: Ashwin Satyanarayana•edited by: Ronda Bowen•updated: 7/4/2011

We know what an Identity Attack is and how it can be devastating for individuals or companies that have anything to do online. One of the ways an Identity attack can be unleashed is the proxy Servers, which is ironically one of the ways to prevent an attack. See how that is possible.

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    By using Proxy Servers, one can just camouflage, hide or mask your IP address on the Internet. The point of such a server is to protect your identity; ironically the same method is used to actually unleash the very attack it is supposed to be saving you from. The point to be understood here is that no matter what one chooses to do on-line, by using proxy servers, one gets to have their IP addresses hidden from prying eyes on the Internet and your activity online remains completely clandestine.

    Think of a proxy server as a mask of sorts. Only it isn’t physically and it isn’t that simple to understand. A proxy server is a shield that prevents you from the gazing eyes of the virtual public. It acts like your bodyguard, shields you from malicious and stalking eyes and creates a protective buffer between you and the host computer you are connected to.

    You know that each time you want to visit a site like, for example, you would open your browser and request a connection. If you have a proxy server, it would go to the server directly to request for It would first touch the proxy server. The proxy server, in turn, would send the request for the site and the answer to request by the server on which Bright Hub is on, would be routed to your browser in the same way. See how it works:

    Your request for --- Proxy Server --- Remote Host

    Remote Host (Bright Hub’s Server) -- proxy Server -- Your System’s browser

    Now as a result of this connection, the remote server has no way to trace your activity (if there was a need to). If you turn the tables around and think of this rather harmless activity from a hacker’s point of view, you would now see how an Identity Attack happens.

    A common countermeasure is to keep changing your proxy server (if you employ one) so that the malicious server sitting to hit on you can never get to you and would typically fail to identify the systems or your identity at all.

Identity Attacks

All you ever wanted to know about Identity attacks, how they are caused, the various counter measures available to help save ourselves from such an attack.
  1. Introduction to Identity Attacks
  2. Understanding Identity Attacks: Proxy Servers