Can I use VPN and proxy together? How to set it up

Elena Constantinescu
by Elena Constantinescu
VPN Expert & Privacy Advocate
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  • A VPN works differently from a proxy server. However, if you want to improve your anonymity level on Windows PC, you can use a VPN and proxy at the same time.
  • Follow our step-by-step guide to use a proxy and VPN together: a VPN client with native proxy support, by configuring Firefox settings, or by using the Windows 10 proxy options for VPN.
  • To learn more about proxies, check out our Proxy Server section.
  • Join our VPN Troubleshooting Hub to fix any VPN-related issues.
how to use VPN and proxy together

A VPN comes with numerous benefits, such as privacy and security. But if you want to become more anonymous online and hide your true identity even from your VPN provider, then you can use a VPN and proxy server together.

By redirecting your proxy connection to a VPN server, you will hide your true IP with a proxy, and the proxy‘s IP with a VPN. This way, you gain two layers of online anonymity.

Is VPN and proxy the same?

Although they work similarly, VPNs and proxies are not the same. Both hide your IP address to protect your genuine identity over the Internet. However, this doesn’t automatically ensure privacy and security.

If you use a proxy server to change your IP, it won’t also encrypt your data. That means that a hacker is capable of intercepting your network traffic to get hold of your email account credentials or banking details, for example.

However, a VPN not only spoofs your IP address but also encrypts everything that flows in and out of your computer. In case of a man-in-the-middle attack, a cyber-criminal won’t be able to decipher your data even if it manages to acquire it.

Do I need a VPN and a proxy?

In most cases, no, you won’t need a VPN and a proxy, too. If you equip your computer with a premium VPN that has a zero-logging policy, you should be able to connect to a wide range of VPN servers and regularly swap your IP address.

Nevertheless, if you want to raise your anonymity level, it’s possible to reroute your VPN connection through a proxy server.

How can I use VPN and proxy together?


A VPN client with built-in proxy

Private Internet Access proxy settings

  • Sign up for a PIA subscription plan.
  • Download and install PIA on your PC.
  • Right-click PIA’s systray icon.
  • Go to Settings > Proxy.
  • Choose Shadowsocks, click Configure, and pick a location.
  • Or, select SOCKS5 Proxy and specify the Server IP address, Port, User, and Password if required.
  • Left-click PIA’s systray icon.
  • Press the big power button to connect.

Connecting to a VPN with integrated proxy support is the best way to use both a VPN and a proxy simultaneously.

We used Private Internet Access in our example above because it’s the best VPN with built-in proxy, offering support for Shadowsocks and SOCKS5.

Produced by Kape Technologies, PIA supports OpenVPN and WireGuard protocols, 256-bit military-grade encryption, port forwarding, a kill switch, split-tunneling mode, and exclusive DNS.

More about PIA:

  • +3,300 VPN servers in 48 countries
  • No logs or leaks
  • 10 simultaneous connections
  • 24/7 live chat support
  • 30-day money-back guarantee (no free trial)
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Firefox proxy settings

configure proxy settings in Firefox

  • Sign up for a PIA subscription plan.
  • Install the PIA browser extension for Firefox.
  • Go to Firefox Settings.
  • In the General tab, go to Network Settings.
  • Click Settings.
  • Choose the proxy type and configure settings.
  • Connect to a VPN server.

Using a proxy server at the browser level is different from the previous method because it only protects your browser traffic. Any other Internet-enabled applications will be excluded from the proxy and VPN protection.


Windows 10 proxy settings

configure VPN proxy settings on Windows 10

  • Create a manual VPN connection.
  • Right-click Start and go to Network Connections > VPN.
  • Select your VPN connection and click Advanced options.
  • Scroll down to VPN proxy settings.
  • Select from Automatically detect settings, Use setup script, and Manual setup.
  • Enter the required information and click Apply.
  • Connect to the VPN.

If you don’t have a VPN client or if it doesn’t have native proxy support, the next best thing is to manually set up the proxy settings on the Windows 10 VPN connection.

Keep in mind that it’s a different setting than configuring a global proxy server on Windows 10.

In conclusion, you can use a VPN and proxy together to add an extra layer of anonymity to your network connection. Just keep in mind that you need a stable Internet connection.

FAQ: Learn more about VPN and proxy

  • Can you use a proxy and a VPN?

Yes, you can use a proxy and a VPN together for extra online anonymity.

  • How do I unblock a site?

You can use a VPN to access blocked sites.

  • Can’t connect to the proxy server?

If you can’t connect to the proxy server, reset the Internet options, disable your proxy, use a VPN, and try other possible solutions.