Apple included the Private Relay capability with the release of iOS/iPadOS 15 and macOS Monterey. Private Relay, which is available to iCloud+ customers and runs in Safari, is supposed to help protect users’ privacy when they browse the internet.
Why Private Relay? What does it do?
Apple’s Private Relay Service divides the information linked with your internet browser so that no single person has access to all of it. When you use a browser like Safari to explore the internet, the following information is connected with your browsing session:
- DNS records
- IP addresses
In most cases, both your network provider and the websites you visit have access to this information. Apple and your network provider only know your IP address, not the website you’re trying to access, thanks to Private Relay.
The third-party in charge of connecting you to the website only has access to the website’s DNS information, but not to your IP address.
Before you start using Private Relay, keep in mind that it is currently considered a beta function, which means it may not always work as planned.
That isn’t to say it isn’t useful; just keep in mind that if you have an issue, you may want to turn it off again.
How to turn on Private Relay
To begin using Private Relay, you must first:
- Have iOS/iPadOS 15 or later on your iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, or macOS Monterey or later on your Mac.
- Your Apple ID must be linked to an iCloud+ membership. If you pay for iCloud, you get iCloud+. If you simply have the free iCloud plan, Private Relay will not operate.
- Make use of Safari.
Private Relay on iPhone or iPad
- Go to [your name] > iCloud > Private Relay under Settings.
- Toggle the Private Relay switch to on (Beta).
- Above Private Relay, you’ll see IP Address Location. To see IP address possibilities, tap on it.
You have the option of:
- Maintain general location, which will continue to use your general IP address location so that websites you visit can serve you local content.
- Use your nation and time zone to hide your approximate location from the websites you visit.
Private Relay on Mac
1. Select Apple menu > System Preferences from the top menu bar, then click on Apple ID.
2. In the left-hand menu, click the iCloud tab, then check the box next to Private Relay.
3. Click Options next to Private Relay, and at the bottom of the popup window, you’ll notice
- IP Address Location. You have two options for IP addresses:
- Maintain general location will continue to use your general IP address location so that the websites you visit can deliver local content to you.
4. Use nation and time zone to hide your approximate location from the websites you visit.
After you’ve made your IP address selections, click OK.
Turn on Private Relay for just one network
By setting the Limit IP Address Tracking option for a specific network, you can enable Private Relay.
On iPhone or iPad
- Go to Settings > Wi-Fi and press the information button next to the network. Limit IP Address Tracking by toggling the switch next to it.
- Go to Settings > Cellular > Cellular Data Options to adjust your cellular network settings. Limit IP Address Tracking by toggling the switch next to it.
Select Network from the Apple menu > System Preferences. Select your network name from the dropdown menu with the Wi-Fi tab selected in the left side menu. Limit IP Address Tracking is checked by default.
Turn off Private Relay
Simply return to the same Settings or System Preferences screen and de-select Private Relay to turn it off. Your IP address and browsing activities (Safari) will no longer be masked, and you will no longer be protected from unprotected connections while using apps, according to the warning.
Private Relay is still in beta
When you enable Private Relay, Apple warns you that the technology is still in development and that it may cause problems with certain websites.
Websites, they claim, may display material from the incorrect area or make the sign-in procedure more onerous.
You’ll also discover that Private Relay isn’t compatible with many networks, particularly those that track or limit your access, such as those at school or work. It also doesn’t work with parental control software.