mobile operator on iphone “icloud private relay” Want to block but what is it?

This is a new battle started by European and American mobile operators: they “icloud private relay” want to block. This new feature prevents them from properly analyzing the traffic of their users, which is not liked by the big global telecom operators.

mobile operator on iphone

Available with any subscription to the US and European mobile operator iCloud + “icloud private relay” and has been introduced since iOS 15 and macOS Monterey.

“icloud private relay” What is?

If you downloaded iOS 15, you may have noticed something different about your iCloud account. This is because Apple has updated all paid iCloud accounts (Apple One plan) to something called iCloud+. It includes tons of cool new features in addition to the existing storage, sync and cloud features, but the most amazing of all “icloud private relay” ,icloud private relay In English). You can compare it to a VPN… but that would be wrong. Why ?

“icloud private relay” With this, your browsing traffic is encrypted and sent through a relay to hide your exact location, your IP or the content of your browsing traffic. So all your browsing activity in Safari is routed through two relays.

Your data is encrypted and then sent to Apple, so your Internet service provider cannot see any of your web browsing requests. Once on Apple’s proxy server, the DNS query (which is on a specific server IP address) “fandroid.com” such as the domain name) and the IP address of your iPhone, iPad, or Mac are separated.

How iCloud Private Relay Works

How iCloud Private Relay Works // Source: Apple

Your IP address is with Apple, while your DNS query is a “reliable partner” is forwarded, encrypted, to whoever has the decryption key, as well as a fake intermediate IP address based on your guessed location. Apple did not name its partners, but they are arguably larger companies such as Akamai, Cloudflare, and Fastly.

This means that Apple knows your IP address, but not the names of the sites you are visiting, and the trusted partner knows the site you are visiting, but not your IP. You cannot piece together a complete picture of who you are and where you are going. The point is that the websites you visit completely ignore this information, so they cannot profile your activity.

There is one key difference with a VPN: “icloud private relay” It doesn’t reveal who you are, it just gives you a fuzzy version of you. You are still identified in such and such region, so you will have access to the French Netflix catalog from France, but the data is approximate. This prevents websites from creating an accurate advertising profile. Finally, This is only related to the Safari browser for the time being,

Why is this bothering mobile operators?

According to information broadcast by The Telegraph, then taken on McGee, mobile operators Orange, Vodafone, Telefonica and T-Mobile want to force Apple to deactivate this new function. He had sent a letter to this effect to the European Commission in August.

“Private Relay claims to improve users’ privacy when they connect and browse the Internet by encrypting and redirecting their traffic. […] This prevents other networks and servers from accessing critical data and metadata, including the operators in charge of connections (…) The way private relays are implemented would seriously undermine European digital sovereignty. “

a priority, “icloud private relay” Operators go against several important areas, especially on data collection for quality of service measures and legal obligations to block sites. This is also a way for mobile operators to limit advertising revenue, as targeting data is critical for this type of revenue.

Two US mobile operators T-Mobile and Sprint have gold and have already blocked the function with their customers. Mobile operators have the option to deactivate it, followed by a warning message on the iPhone.


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About the Author: Tad Fisher

Prone to fits of apathy. Music specialist. Extreme food enthusiast. Amateur problem solver.

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