Using your web server as a proxy
At Geekdom I’m stuck using a shared wifi connection. This exposes me to a slew of security issues. Eek! An easy way to resolve the security problems is to send all your traffic, encrypted, through another server. I already have a web server with plenty of processing and bandwidth capacity to handle my web browsing, so I decided to use it.
Getting things set up is extremely easy. I followed the instructions from a TechRepublic article to configure PuTTY (the “first” through “third” instructions) to make a secure tunnel to my server. Next, I used Proxy Switcher Lite (free) to make it easy to tell Windows (and any software you are running) to use the tunnel or connect directly to the internet without having to go into the Windows settings.
That’s it! I used my IP website, IP Addr.es, to make sure my server’s IP was showing up instead of Geekdom’s IP, so I can be confident that my traffic is making its way through the secure tunnel.
If you want to give this a shot but don’t have a server, you could always use a VPS. I’ve got several at Linode that I am very satisfied with. Super fast, super cheap, super reliable. You could also try using a commercial VPN service, but personally I feel this setup provides superior security and is easier to use.