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Apple’s iCloud Private Relay feature is not available in Belarus, China, Uganda, and other countries

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Apple’s upcoming iCloud Private Relay feature, which aims to hide users’ web browsing habits, will not be available in several countries infamous for spying on citizens and enacting harsh online censorship laws.

Introduced Monday as an upcoming iCloud + feature, iCloud Private Relay incorporates internet relays to allow users to safely browse the web in Safari.

As pointed out ReutersHowever, Apple’s new service not be available in Belarus, China, Colombia, Egypt, Kazakhstan, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkmenistan, Uganda and the Philippines due to local regulations.

As detailed by Apple, iCloud Private Relay encrypts traffic leaving a device and then routes requests through two relays “so that no one, including Apple, can use” or access a user’s IP address, location, and browsing activity. device. More specifically, web traffic is first sent to an Apple server and its IP address is stripped from it. It then travels to a second server maintained by an external operator, where a temporary IP address is assigned before being sent to a final destination.

The feature is designed to hide online browsing habits from internet service providers, ad servers, and other entities seeking to create profiles based on information collected from the user. Apple claims that it can’t even connect the dots between users and visited websites.

Apple said it will reveal third-party server partners at a later date.

The news of the international restrictions on iCloud Private Relay comes amid allegations from privacy advocates that Apple appeals to dictatorial governments in exchange for access to its burgeoning retail markets. China, which in the past forced the tech giant to adhere to its cybersecurity laws, is often cited as an example of Apple’s alleged double talk on consumer privacy.

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