Apple is Investing Heavily in Privacy with iCloud+

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Tech giant Apple unveiled its next operating systems for the Mac, iPhone and iPad, and other gadgets this week. Many of the new features have to do with privacy, including a slew of ‘plus’ features for iCloud.

 

Everyone with an Apple ID (say, every Apple customer) gets 5 gigabytes of storage space on iCloud, where users can store photos, backups, emails, and a host of other files. That data is immediately accessible from any other Apple device. If you want more storage capacity, you will pay – 99 cents per month for 50 GB. These paid subscriptions will soon all be ‘iCloud+’: that means more privacy and security, but for the same price.

The novelties will be released simultaneously with iOS 15, iPadOS 15, macOS Monterey and watchOS 8: updates to the current operating systems for Apple’s computers and mobile gadgets that will be rolled out shortly after the summer. One of the highlights of iCloud+ is Private Relay, a service that allows users to surf the internet more securely, without anyone else watching.

If you browse the internet with the Safari browser, Private Relay ensures that all traffic from your device is encrypted. As a result, nothing or no one in the path between user and website has access to this information, not even Apple or the internet provider.

All user requests are routed through two separate internet relays. The first assigns an anonymous IP address from which the region can be derived, but not the precise location. The second unlocks the entered web address and sends the user there. ‘By separating these different types of information, the privacy of users is guaranteed.

After all, nobody can find out who a user is and which sites they visit, it sounds. Apple also claims that this extra layer of security does not come at the expense of the surfing speed in Safari.

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