Setting up a global SSH Tunnel on Android phones
This tutorial assumes the reader possesses a fully configured SSH server and rooted phone. In lieu of a server, (eg., the reader only has only a Windows-based operating system), research into CYGWIN is recommended. I use CYGWIN to run my SSH server and I have found that it is the most robust option for Windows users; however, setting this up on Windows can be a daunting task.
Setting up global SSH Tunnel on Android
1. Download 2 apps from the Google Playstore: ConnectBot and ProxyDroid
2. Install ConnectBot and ProxyDroid on your phone.
3. In ConnectBot set up Port forwards for your SSH connection. For "Type" field use "Dynamic (SOCKS)." For “Source Port” use 56001 or any local port not being used. The reasoning behind using port 56001 is this: System Ports (0-1023), User Ports (1024-49151), and the Dynamic and/or Private Ports (49152-65535)
4. Open ProxyDroid and configure as follows:
Port: 56001 (or the port you chose to use in step 3)
Proxy Type: SOCKS5
Global Proxy: Check the box
The above procedure accomplishes several things. First, ConnectBot remotely connects to your SSH server. Next, the ConnectBot connection forwards to the local port 56001. ProxyDroid then redirects all network traffic through the localhost on port 56001. Once you are connected through ConnectBot and ProxyDroid is activated all of your data will be tunneled through the encrypted ConnectBot session. This is an excellent way to set up a global proxy because it does not require manual configuration of any applications to connect through the proxy. You can test the functionality of the connection by opening up your phone browser and performing the Google search: What is my IP. If the proxy is functional you will see the WAN IP of the network of your SSH server. Additional and more thorough testing can be done with packet sniffers such as WireShark.
An application called "SSH Tunnel" is an alternative to accomplishing the above. However, I find ConnectBot and ProxyDroid is more elegant and gives better control-- not to mention being more sophisticated/chic. When correctly performed the ConnectBot and ProxyDroid method encrypts all 3g, 4g and Wi-Fi data on your phone. This is obviously useful for phone access of sensitive materials especially using unfamiliar or alien network connections. With the current proliferation of identity theft via electronic snooping on mobile devices I do not advocate using cellular phones for any banking or electronic transactions without setting up a robust and reliable encrypted connection.