Proxies and Rotating IPs for Web Scraping with Python

Nov 29, 2023

Web scraping is a powerful technique for extracting data from websites, but it often comes with challenges such as IP blocking, captchas, and rate limiting. One effective solution to overcome these obstacles is to use proxies and rotating IPs. In this article, we'll explore how proxies work, how to set them up in Python, and best practices for using them in your web scraping projects.

What are Proxies?

A proxy server acts as an intermediary between your scraping script and the target website. Instead of making requests directly from your IP address, the requests are routed through the proxy server. This allows you to mask your real IP address and appear as if the requests are coming from a different location.

Proxies are crucial for web scraping because many websites have restrictions or rate limits based on IP addresses. By using proxies, you can avoid being blocked or throttled, and continue scraping data without interruption.

Types of Proxies

There are several types of proxies commonly used for web scraping:

  1. HTTP and HTTPS Proxies: These proxies are suitable for scraping websites that use the HTTP or HTTPS protocol. They handle the communication between your script and the target website.

  2. SOCKS4 and SOCKS5 Proxies: SOCKS proxies are more versatile and can handle various protocols beyond HTTP, such as FTP or SMTP. SOCKS5 proxies offer additional security and functionality compared to SOCKS4.

Setting up Proxies in Python

To set up proxies in Python, you can use the popular requests library. Here's an example of how to configure proxies:

import requests

proxy = {

'http': '',

'https': ''


response = requests.get('', proxies=proxy)


In this example, we define a dictionary called proxy that specifies the proxy URL and port for both HTTP and HTTPS requests. We then pass the proxies parameter to the requests.get() method to make the request through the proxy.

Rotating IPs

Using a single proxy can still lead to IP blocking if the website detects unusual activity from that IP. To further enhance your web scraping resilience, you can implement IP rotation. This involves using a pool of proxies and switching between them for each request.

Here's an example of how to implement IP rotation in Python:

import requests

from itertools import cycle

proxies = [





proxy_pool = cycle(proxies)

for _ in range(10):

proxy = next(proxy_pool)


response = requests.get('', proxies={'http': proxy, 'https': proxy})


except requests.exceptions.RequestException as e:

print(f'Error occurred: {e}')

In this example, we define a list of proxy URLs called proxies. We then create a cycle object called proxy_pool using the itertools.cycle() function, which allows us to iterate over the proxies in a circular manner.

Inside the loop, we retrieve the next proxy from the pool using next(proxy_pool) and make the request using that proxy. If an error occurs, we catch the exception and print an error message.

Finding Reliable Proxy Providers

When looking for a reliable proxy provider, consider the following factors:

  • Proxy Types: Look for providers that offer a wide range of proxy types, including data center proxies, residential proxies, and mobile proxies.

  • Proxy Pool Size: Choose providers with a large pool of proxies to ensure a good selection and availability.

  • Performance: Opt for providers that offer fast and reliable proxies with low latency and high uptime.

  • Pricing and Support: Consider the provider's pricing plans, customer support, and additional features like API access or session control.

Some recommended proxy providers include Oxylabs, Luminati, Smartproxy, and Geosurf. However, it's important to research and select a provider that best suits your specific needs and budget.


Proxies and rotating IPs are essential tools for web scraping with Python. They help you overcome IP blocking, captchas, and rate limiting, allowing you to scrape data more effectively. By using the requests library and implementing IP rotation, you can enhance the resilience and reliability of your web scraping projects.

Remember to choose reliable proxy providers, test your proxy connections, and be mindful of the website's terms of service and legal considerations when scraping data.

With the knowledge gained from this article, you're now equipped to leverage proxies and rotating IPs in your Python web scraping endeavors. Happy scraping!

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