What is an HTTP Proxy? Types of HTTP Proxies Explained!

Are you working on a system that requires HTTP Proxies, and you do not have an idea of what they are? Come in now to read our ultimate guide to HTTP Proxies. Get informed by our experts today.

If you have been making use of proxies for a while now, chances are there that you must have come across terms such as HTTP Proxy, HTTPS Proxy, Socks Proxies, and many others – and they seem confusing.

Very important is the fact that using the wrong proxies could lead to a breach of security and some compatibility issues.In this article, the focus is on HTTP Proxies. You are going to be learning a lot about HTTP Proxies, including what they are, their types, the difference between HTTP and HTTPS Proxies, and the best HTTP Proxies in the market.

What is an HTTP Proxy?

The acronym HTTP is gotten from HyperText Transfer Protocol, it is a type of Internet protocol known as the HTTP Protocol. When used in the context of a proxy, it still works with the same principle. HTTP Proxy is a type of proxy server that acts as an intermediary server between a client and a web server. If you are using an HTTP Proxy, the following is what happens when you send a web request to a website.

  • The request does not go to the website; it goes to the proxy server as a plaintext
  • Proxy server analyses it, and then send a fresh request to the website using the data bundled with the request but changing your IP address (optionally)
  • The website receives it and sends back a response to the proxy server
  • The proxy server then forwards the response to you.
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If you look at the above, you will see that two TCP connections are initiated. The proxy server would have to read your request for it to send it to the website you intend sending it to. This makes HTTP Proxies not secure.

Avoid using HTTP Proxies for anything that requires you to send sensitive security information like credit card details, and authentication details of important websites. This is because the proxy can read them.

Types of HTTP Proxies

There are basically three (3) types of HTTP Proxies, based on the level of anonymity.this is determine by modification made to the HTTP header packets. Usually, here are 3 types of HTTP headers send by proxies – HTTP_VIA, HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR, and REMOTE_ADDR. The information sent for these headers is what differentiates them.

A transparent proxy acts as if it is not there. It is the type of proxies used for censorship by government, organization, and schools. These types of proxies do not modify your requests. Websites you visit will see your IP address. The major reason why these proxies are used is just to control your Internet usage and censor them.

They send your real IP Address in the HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR, then their own IP Address in the REMOTE_ADDR – the HTTP_VIA header is also sent. With this, the web server will not only know you are behind a proxy but also your IP Address is revealed.

  • REMOTE_ADDR = proxy IP address
  • HTTP_VIA = proxy IP address
  • HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR = your IP address

An Anonymous Proxy modifies your request by stripping off your IP Address and substituting it with its own. However, it identifies itself as a proxy to the website, and as such, the website can decide to deny it access. Your IP Address is not sent in the HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR – proxy’s IP is sent. However, it sends the HTTP_VIA header, telling the website that you are using a proxy.

  • REMOTE_ADDR = Proxy IP address
  • HTTP_VIA = Proxy IP address
  • HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR = Proxy IP address

Elite Proxies takes everything to a whole new level. Aside from the fact that it hides your IP Address and substitutes it with its own, it does not identify itself as a proxy and makes use of some techniques to avoid getting detected a proxy.

Because they are undetectable, they are the best when it comes to evading censorship. The HTTP_VIA, and HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR  are all left blank. Only the REMOTE_ADDR has a value, filled with the proxy IP Address. They are however, more expensive.

REMOTE_ADDR = proxy IP address
HTTP_VIA = not determined (Blank)
HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR = not determined (Blank)


So many people confuse HTTP with HTTP Proxies. While HTTPS Proxies can be said to be secure and can be used for sending sensitive information online, they are other differences between the two. Let take a look at how HTTPS Proxies operate first.

When using HTTPS Proxies, your requests are not sent to the HTTPS Proxy for it to read and then echo it to the websites you intend to visit. Instead, when you send a web request, your browser sends a CONNECT request to the proxy server. The proxy server now creates a TCP connection after which your request data now follow the channel created by the TCP connection to reach the website. The only thing checked and modified is your IP Address. This ensures end-to-end security since your data is not viewed by the server.

Looking at the above, you will observe that while two TCP connections are created in the case of HTTP Proxies, only one is created when using HTTPS Proxies. HTTPS is the way to go now because of information security. Avoid using HTTP Proxies for HTTPS resources.

More, What is the Difference Between HTTP and SOCKS Proxies?

Free HTTP proxies List

Yes, You can easily find lots of public HTTP proxies online, such as,

free HTTP proxy list

But take note, Those Free HTTP proxies are not safe to use, you can learn from this post to know why free proxies are dangerous! And Do really slow when using this type of proxies!

Also, you can learn how to set up HTTP proxies from Here,

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Best HTTP Proxies to Buy

If you are probably wondering where to buy HTTP Proxies, this section of the article is meant for you. This section of the article will be divided into two – datacenter proxies and residential proxies.

It is very important I state here that some of the proxies discussed below are HTTPS proxies – HTTP Proxies are compatible with HTTP resources. It is HTTP Proxies that shouldn’t be used for HTTPS resources.

HTTP Datacenter Proxy Providers

Datacenter Proxies are the proxies that make use of IP Addresses that originate from datacenters. They are easily detected, and many of them are blacklisted on many websites.



  • Locations: US and EU region only
  • Concurrency Allowed: Up to 100 threads
  • Bandwidth Allowed: Unlimited
  • Cost: $1.49 per proxy for a month

MyPrivateProxy is arguably the best private provider in the market. Its proxies are very fast, and they boast of maintaining an uptime history of 99.99 percent. Their proxies are also very cheap. their proxies do not support SOCKS protocol.

However, they support both the HTTP and HTTPS protocols. They make use of green energy sources and as such, can be termed as an eco-friendly proxy provider. Their proxies are reliable, secure, compatible with many websites.



  • Locations: Worldwide
  • Concurrency Allowed: Unlimited
  • Bandwidth Allowed: Unlimited
  • Cost: $1.00 per proxy for a month

InstantProxies are known for the provision of private HTTP Proxies. they have some of the cheapest proxies in the market, and with just $10, you can get your hands on 10 private proxies. they have proxy servers in the United States and some locations in Europe. Their proxies are very fast, built on quality infrastructures. However, they are not compatible with some complex websites.



  • Locations:the US and few locations in Europe
  • Concurrency Allowed: Unlimited
  • Bandwidth Allowed: Unlimited
  • Cost: $1.60 per proxy for a month
  • HTTP Residential Proxy Provider

Highproxies proxies are hosted on extremely 1Gbps servers with 16GB RAM. With this, you are sure of proxies that are fast and stable. Aside from selling regular private and shared proxies, they also sell some specialized proxies, which include social media proxies, classified Ad proxies, ticketing proxies, and are also into the provision of Private VPN.  Their proxies, just like that of MyPrivateProxy and InstantProxies, comes with unlimited bandwidth.

HTTP Residential Proxy Providers

Residential proxies are proxies that route clients’ requests to websites through IP Addresses assigned by Internet Service Providers. The IP Addresses used by residential providers are that of devices in residential areas.



  • IP Pool Size: Over 40 million
  • Locations: All countries in the world
  • Concurrency Allowed: Unlimited
  • Bandwidth Allowed: Starts at 40GB
  • Cost: Starts at $500 monthly for 40GB

Luminati is arguable the best proxy provider in the market. It is also the largest proxy network with a combined proxy pool size of over 47 million. They have proxies in the datacenter, residential, and mobile proxy categories.

The focus here is on their residential proxies, which are some of the most undetectable proxies in the industry. Their proxies are compatible with most complex sites including sneaker sites and ticketing sites. They have proxies in all countries and in most cities in the world.  they are however, expensive and come with limited bandwidth.



  • IP Pool Size: Over 10 million
  • Locations: 195 locations across the globe
  • Concurrency Allowed: Unlimited
  • Bandwidth Allowed: Starts at 5GB
  • Cost: Starts at $75 monthly for 5GB

With over 10 million residential IP Addresses in their pool, Smartproxy is one of the largest proxy providers in the market. It is a premium provider and in the league of Luminati. It has proxies in about 195 locations and has support for city-specific proxies for 8 major cities.

Unlike Luminati, its smallest package is not expensive as you can buy 5GB bandwidth from them at a price of $75. Their bandwidth is also limited.


Stormproxies Logo

  • IP Pool Size: 40,000
  • Locations: the US and EU region only
  • Concurrency Allowed: only one device per port
  • Cost: Starts at $50 monthly for 5 ports

Stormproxies differ from Smartproxy and Luminati in the aspects of pricing – they are way cheaper and comes with unlimited bandwidth. Their proxies are not priced based on bandwidth but by ports. With $50, you can purchase their smallest plan, which comes with 5 ports, and they will give you access to their 40K residential IP pool for you to use. Their proxies are high rotating.

FAQs on HTTP Proxy / HTTPS Proxy

  • Are HTTP Proxies Anonymous?

Not all HTTP proxies are anonymous. Some HTTP proxies are anonymous and are known as HTTP anonymous proxies. Even though they are anonymous, they are not secure, and you need to be mindful of the kind of data you send through them since they can read your request data.

  • Which is Better – HTTP or HTTPS Proxies?

HTTPS Proxies are the enhanced version of HTTP proxies. they are more secure and do not have access to your request data. Unlike in the case of HTTP proxies that view your request data as plaintext, HTTPS Proxies do not even view your data; they create a channel for which your request can be relayed through, while they change your IP Address.

  • What are the Benefits of an HTTPS Proxy?

Why use HTTPS Proxies instead of HTTP Proxies? what benefits can you derive from HTTPS Proxies that you cannot get from HTTP Proxies? No doubt, the HTTP has been around before HTTPS. However, it is because of the shortcomings of HTTP that led to the development of HTTPS.

The major benefit HTTPS Proxies have is that they are safer. This is because traffic is encrypted, and the proxy servers only act as a relay by creating a channel to pass your requests through while stripping out your IP Address. They are also more anonymous than HTTP Proxies.


As a way of ending the discussion on HTTP Proxy, I will repeat myself that use only HTTP Proxies when you are not sending sensitive information since they are not secure. Also, note that most of the proxy providers above provide HTTPS proxies, which are HTTP compliant – only a few HTTP providers re still operating.