We don’t usually encounter many Wi-Fi problems when we use our iPhone, iPad, or Apple Watch. But what if you see a “Wi-Fi Privacy Warning” message when you add a new Wi-Fi network or are just checking your network settings? You may not even be aware that it’s happening.
So, what should you do if you see this message? Why is it showing up in the first place, and what should we do about it?
Why is the Privacy Warning Showing Up
If you receive the “Privacy Warning,” don’t panic. It’s normal behavior if the network you’re connected to doesn’t meet the security standards recommended by Apple.
Wi-Fi Privacy Warning: What it Means and What to Do
If your iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch are updated to iOS 14, iPadOS 14, and watchOS 7, Private Wi-Fi Address is automatically enabled.
However, if you cannot connect to Wi-Fi or access the internet after joining a Wi-Fi network, you may need to turn off your Private Wi-FI address.
This is because some Wi-Fi networks will not allow your Apple devices to join with Private Wi-Fi enabled. Here’s how you’ll know, you’ll receive a warning that says, “ This network is blocking encrypted DNS traffic” or “Your network settings prevent content from loading privately.” If you feel safe, you can toggle off Private Wi-Fi Address on a case-by-case basis.
How To Check Your Private Wi-Fi Address and Turn off when needed
- Open the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad
- Choose Wi-Fi
- Tap the info icon next to the Wi-Fi Network you’ve joined
The toggle switch next to Private Wi-Fi Address should be on by default. This ensures that your iPhone and iPad join the Wi-Fi network with a unique MAC (Media Access Control) address. Your iPhone or iPad will use a different private address if you haven’t joined this network in six weeks, made your iPhone forget the network, reset your network settings, or erased all contents and settings on your device.
How To Turn Private Wi-Fi Address On & Off on your Apple Watch
It’s just as easy to access the warning on your Apple Watch. To do this:
- Open the Settings app on your Apple Watch by pressing the Digital Crown once and tapping the Settings icon.
- Select Wi-Fi
- Tap the name of your Wi-Fi network
- Scroll to Private Address and either toggle the switch on or off
What to do if you have Problems
Suppose you’re experiencing problems with your Wi-Fi showing the Privacy Warning message. First, try turning Airplane Mode on and off. If that doesn’t work, restarting your device may help.
To Turn Airplane Mode on and off:
- Swipe down from the upper right corner of your iPhone or iPad
- Tap on the little Airplane icon
Wait a few moments and then tap the Airplane icon again to turn off Airplane Mode.
To Restart Your Device:
- Use Siri
- Say, “ Hey Siri, Restart my iPhone or iPad
- Siri will confirm that’s what you want to do.
- Just tap Restart.
Now that you know how to manage the Privacy Warning message and turn Private Wi-Fi Address off and on, you’ll know what to do if you receive the “ This network is blocking encrypted DNS traffic” message. Note: turning off Private Wi-Fi Address will open you up to tracking and profiling, but sometimes it’s necessary to be able to connect to a Wi-Fi network. Just be careful!
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