If you work for an organization, you must’ve noticed that they require you to connect to a VPN server whenever you access the remote devices with your device. The VPN server encrypts and encapsulates the connection to give you a safe passage to the content of the device. This practice helps the organization safeguard sensitive data and helps you not get your identity and internet history hijacked.
Personal users who don’t need to be concerned about network security, are more prone to use DNS proxies that lets them access geo-blocked content hassle-free.
Today, we will discuss how VPN differs from DNS proxy and which one is the perfect match for you.
What Is a Smart DNS Proxy
As we visit a domain with its name (like Google, Facebook, etc,.), web browsers communicate with the domain servers with their IP address. The process of finding the IP address associated with a particular domain is known as DNS lookup.
The performance of domain lookup is improved by using smart DNS proxy servers.
The way a DNS proxy works is similar to how almost every proxy works. By changing something that can be tracked down to the source of the request.
The difference between a smart DNS proxy and a forward proxy is that the DNS proxy replaces the “DNS requests” with a new DNS resolution query, but the forward proxies reroute the requests to change the IP address through physical or virtual devices.
In easy terms, Legacy proxies change your IP address. Smart DNS proxies change your DNS request with a new one.
A geo-blocked content is a piece of information available on the internet that can’t be accessed from particular regions. Typical usage of any proxy includes accessing geo-blocked content through a free list of proxies, which alternates the IP every few minutes.
Smart DNS proxies offer faster and more relevant access to geo-blocked content using servers that are closer to the source; for physical distance affects the speed of the connection. The other usages may include data scraping, content blocking, traffic balancing, and so forth.
What Is a VPN Server
Virtual private networks (VPN) are fundamentally very different from smart DNS proxies. VPN connections encrypt all of the traffic that passes to and from your device or network by tunneling the whole connection. VPN doesn’t use hard-wired connections as in leased lines or trusted connections, instead uses a virtual connection that keeps the traffic safe from outside intervention.
VPN servers work for every application, browser, and network element that drives traffic to the internet, intranet, or your remote site. Your network traffic is encapsulated with encryption and transported to the destination by the means of authorization and authentication.
VPN servers also mask your IP address to keep you anonymous from the prying eyes on the internet. When using public Wi-Fi in cafes and shops, connecting to a VPN server can save you from getting cyber attacked. The smart DNS proxies fail in this aspect.
Differences Between Smart DNS Proxy and VPN server
Let’s categorically understand the difference between a smart DNS proxy and a VPN server.
The primary reason to use a proxy or VPN almost always narrows down to privacy. Whether accessing the internet freely or safeguarding yourself from cyber attackers, the reasons for using a smart DNS proxy or a VPN server are always similar. But, the difference between those often compels us to choose one over the other.
VPN servers establish a network tunnel from your device or network to the target server. VPN servers encapsulate every bit of traffic that is to be originated or received by you. In addition to the secure pipeline being very effective to prevent cyber attacks, VPN servers also protect you from browser cookies.
Smart DNS Proxy
Smart DNS proxies never establish a secure pipeline to the servers so that your requests are being sent. They fundamentally take care of your queries by changing the DNS address, but the IP address remains the same throughout the cycle.
This practice, although effective in accessing geo-blocked content and bypassing firewalls, does little to protect your privacy.
Whatever service you choose for your personal or organizational requirement, if the solution isn’t fast enough to fulfill your requirements, it’s futile. Although most modern VPN servers and Smart DNS proxies are fast enough to handle most tasks, there’s a significant speed difference between them.
As VPN servers are more focused on keeping your browsing sessions protected, they go through a comparatively complex process before sending the request through. The process involves encryption and tunneling. But, that doesn’t imply that VPN servers are slow. The majority of the VPN servers available today are fast enough.
Smart DNS Proxy
Smart DNS proxies are generally faster than VPN servers. The difference in speed is observable while streaming or doing data-intensive tasks on the internet. As the objective of DNS proxies is to let you access geo-blocked content, the process needs to be faster to provide you with uninterrupted service. Otherwise, the point of having such technology fails.
Security and Encryption
Not everyone needs the greatest security measures to access the internet. The extent of required encryption and security solely depends on the activity of the user. If you are accessing a sensitive protected server, your parameters of required security must differ from someone who is surfing YouTube.
VPN servers are far more secure than Smart DNS proxies. The VPN servers encrypt the data that is to be transported through several encryption methods and in most cases follow security protocols like IKEv2 and PPTP to protect the pipeline from external intervention. VPN servers are generally more secure.
Smart DNS Proxy
Smart DNS proxies don’t consider security as their priority. And rightfully so. As the DNS proxy servers don’t even hide your IP address (they change the DNS), adapting to a better security protocol by sacrificing speed nullifies the point.
Protocols are the laws that the technologies follow to comply with the task that they are assigned to do. The difference between protocols is quite visible in these two different types of products.
PPTP and IKEv2 protocols are the most popular VPN protocols that safeguard sensitive data from cyber attacks.
The PPTP protocol creates a secure pipeline between you and the server for safe data transactions.
The IKEv2 protocol exchanges an internet key that is bound by a session timeout ticket. The source hands over a virtual key to the target, and when the data successfully reaches the target, the key is used to decrypt it.
Smart DNS Proxy
Smart DNS proxies change the DNS of the source but don’t typically follow a protocol to secure the data being sent or received.
Pricing is an important factor for personal or organizational use.
VPN servers are generally pricier than smart DNS servers. The price includes internet safety, IP masking, and other security features that are absent in smart DNS proxy servers.
Smart DNS Proxy
Smart DNS proxy servers are cheaper than VPN servers. The price includes a faster connection, accessing geo-blocked content, and other user-centric features that VPN lacks.
The Bottom Line
Hopefully, you’re now aware of the difference between VPN servers and smart DNS proxies. The main difference between them is the issue that they intend to solve. While VPN is focused on cybersecurity, DNS proxy is more focused on providing faster access to the user. The other differences include encryption, pricing, and protocol differences.