- iCloud Private Relay can help protect your privacy by hiding your identity and location while browsing in Safari.
- This feature is currently in beta, only available in iOS 15 or macOS Monterey or later, and requires an iCloud+ subscription.
- If you’re eligible, you can turn it on in your iCloud settings in the Settings app on iOS or in System Preferences on a Mac.
Apple is increasingly focused on protecting your privacy online, and a new feature, iCloud Private Relay, is designed to let you hide your identity and the websites you visit when you use Safari on your iPhone, iPad, or Mac.
What is iCloud Private Relay?
During normal web browsing, various elements such as your IP address and DNS records are visible to your network service provider and the websites you visit. This data is generally not harmful and can be used to build a picture of your browsing history.
If you’re concerned about your privacy, you can turn on Apple’s iCloud Private Relay, which hides data like your IP address and DNS records so that no one (not even Apple) can see your identity, location or search history.
To use iCloud Private Relay, you need to enable the feature on the device you’re browsing from, such as an iPhone, iPad, or Mac, and you need to use the Safari web browser—this feature won’t work if you’re using browsers like Chrome or Firefox. Once enabled, your DNS records are encrypted and a temporary IP address is generated every time you visit a website, ensuring your privacy.
How to enable iCloud Private Relay
Setting up a private iCloud server takes just a few taps or clicks, although the process depends on whether you’re using an iPhone, iPad, or Mac.
- On your iPhone or iPad, run Settings and touch yours Apple ID username at the top of the page. touch iCloud and then Private relay. On iCloud Private Relay page, turn it on Private relay by swiping the button to the right.
- If you’re using a Mac, click Apple menu on the menu bar and select System settings. Click Apple ID. On Apple ID page, click to check Private relay.
When you turn it on, you can choose if you want to Keep the general location or Use the country and time zone. The first option is more accurate and can be useful for localized content in Safari to have a better idea of your location.
What to do if iCloud Private Relay is not working
In general, your iCloud Private Relay should work without any effort on your part. However, there are times when it won’t work the way you expect.
If you travel to a location where iCloud Private Relay doesn’t work, your operating system will automatically turn off iCloud Private Relay and then turn it back on when you leave the location, so you usually don’t need to change the settings manually.
If you try to access a website but it won’t open, your current Wi-Fi network may not be compatible with iCloud Private Relay. You can turn off iCloud Private Relay only for the Wi-Fi network you’re currently connected to.
- On your iPhone or iPad, run Settings and touch Wi-Fi. touch i to the right of the network, then turn off Limit tracking of IP addresses by swiping the button to the left. This will disable iCloud Private Relay for this network.
- If you’re using a Mac, click Apple menu on the menu bar and select System settings. Click Chain. On Apple ID page, click to check Private relay. Turn off Limit tracking of IP addresses by unchecking the box.