iOS 16: Private relays can hide more personal data

As part of the iOS 16 rollout, Apple could improve its private relay, allowing the feature to protect more personal data.

Apple is committed to protecting the privacy of its users. Every year, when it releases a new version of iOS, the tech giant keeps announcing new features to improve this protection for users, because this is the most important thing, everyone wants to feel safe using the iOS, without having chances to have his data leaked.

Last year, for example, the company launched iCloud+, a product for users of paid storage on iCloud that provides access to new privacy features. Below is the private relay.

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Private Relay works more or less like a VPN (VPN is virtual private network a private communication network built on top of a public communication network. Traffic is transported over public networks using standard (not necessarily secure) protocols.), allowing users to secure their connection and hide their IP address (unlike other VPNs on iOS, however, Private Relay is not intended to enforce geo-restrictions or bypasses on apps The internet).

Rumor has it that Apple may improve this private relay this year, allowing the feature to hide more personal information. In an article published by Digiday, Charles Manning, CEO of mobile phone company Kochava, cited what the Cupertino-based company could do to strengthen the privacy of its users.

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“I think Apple is going to announce that customers love Private Relay, and it’s so successful that they’re going to make it a permanent in-app behavior feature,” he said.

In fact, at the moment, Private Relay only protects the user’s connection on the web, on Safari. By extending this capability to mobile app traffic, Apple will strengthen the protections it already offers on iOS against mobile app tracking.

A way to extend ATT protection?

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As a reminder, the company sets up a device called ATT or App Tracking Transparency. The device requires developers to explicitly request user permission through a dialog before accessing an identifier called IDFA, which can be used to track users across multiple apps for advertising purposes.

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According to Digiday’s article, the device has its limitations. Additionally, iOS app users continue to be tracked even without consent.

Citing multiple sources, the outlet said that the practice of non-consensual tracking, particularly a technique called fingerprinting, has been “iOS-specific” over the past 12 months.

This situation will encourage Apple to take action. Expanding private forwarding of app traffic will be one of the levers companies can use to combat this unauthorized tracking.

“The logistical implications of applying policy, combined with Apple’s heritage in creating technical safeguards, suggest that they will rely on private relays as a technical (or partial) enforcement mechanism,” explained Charles Manning.

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But of course, this is just a rumor for now. Nonetheless, we settled it quickly. In fact, Apple will be showcasing iOS 16 at its WWDC conference scheduled for June.

Following this event, the company will also release a beta version of the new version of iOS, allowing you to test new features and learn about compatible devices before the official release. According to the latest rumors, the first-generation iPhone 6S, iPhone 6S Plus, and iPhone SE will no longer receive this update to iOS 16.

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