Updated April 10, 2023
Difference Between Proxy Server and Firewall
The firewall and the proxy server are placed between the local computer and the network, providing protection against cyber attacks and threats. Both, The proxy server and the firewall operate in conjunction. The firewall works at a lower level and it can filter all forms of IP packets whereas the proxy server processes the traffic at the application level and filters requests from the unknown client.
What is Firewall?
A firewall which is also known as an application gateway is a set of proxy servers and packet filters. Basically, a firewall can block unauthorized connections from being accessed. A proxy server, on the other hand, works as a mediator that establishes the connection between both the external user and the public network.
The firewall establishes a barrier that must be crossed by traffic moving in multiple directions. It works as an IP packet level filter and provides an efficient method for securing, auditing, tracking, the local network against external malicious network security threats, routing attacks, and IP spoofing. It is an integrated network protection system that not only offers hardware but also software-based security.
What is the proxy server?
The proxy server is often referred to as the application gateway, as it manages the traffic at the application level. Despite the raw packets being analyzed, it also filters data based on the header fields, message size, and content.
The proxy server is a component of the firewall, as it does not distinguish between the packet firewall, port numbers, alone will not be feasible. The proxy server works as a proxy and decides to control the flow of relevant traffic from the application using URLs.
Based on the information provided in the transport and network layer headers, the packet filter is used to forward or block incoming and outgoing packets like protocol, port number, source, and destination address. On the other hand, by testing the content of the message itself, the proxy server filters the application-level data.
Head to Head Comparison between Firewall vs Proxy Server (Infographics)
Below are the top 7 comparisons between Firewall vs Proxy Server:
Firewall vs proxy server
- On a local network, the firewall monitors and filters all incoming and outgoing service requests. Whereas, In order to retrieve data on behalf of a user, a proxy server links a local machine to the server. i.e. it Implements communication between the server and the external client.
- It filters IP packets. Access requests are filtered depending on the inbound traffic’s IP packets. This blocks applications and ports that attempt to obtain unauthorized access. In proxy server, It filters Client-side requests.
There is strictly no unauthorized access permitted. Proxy servers offer connections over the network.
- It is placed between public and private networks. On the other hand, it can be placed on both sides with public networks
- A firewall secures The internal network from unauthorized access and malicious threats. Whilst, The proxy server allows users to anonymously use the internet and ignore the restrictions.
- the firewall generates more overhead compared to the Proxy server.
Comparison between Firewall and proxy server
The table below summarizes the comparisons between Firewall vs Proxy Server:
|On a local network, the firewall monitors and filters all incoming and outgoing service requests.||In order to retrieve data on behalf of a user, a proxy server links a local machine to the server. i.e. it Implements communication between the server and the external client.|
|It filters IP packets. Access requests are filtered depending on the inbound traffic’s IP packets. This blocks applications and ports that attempt to obtain unauthorized access.||It filters Client-side requests.|
|There is strictly no unauthorized access permitted.||Proxy servers offer connections over the network.|
|The firewall operates on data from the network and transport layer.||The proxy server operates on the application layer.|
|It is placed between public and private networks.||It can be placed on both sides with public networks|
|a firewall secures The internal network from unauthorized access and malicious threats.||The proxy server allows users to anonymously use the internet and ignore the restrictions.|
|the firewall generates more overhead compared to the Proxy server.||the Proxy server generates less overhead.|
A firewall and a proxy server work together to secure the system against malicious attacks. A proxy server, however, is a part of the firewall which provides feasibility and more efficiency when it is used in integration with the firewall. So In this article, we have seen a difference between The firewall and proxy server. We hope you will find this article helpful.
This is a guide to Firewall vs Proxy Server. Here we discuss the key differences with infographics and comparison table. You may also have a look at the following articles to learn more –