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How to Fix: Google Detected Unusual Traffic on Safari iPhone

Google throws the “Detected Unusual Traffic” error with I’m not a robot captcha when it detects multiple connection requests with the same IP addresses or when identifying that browser integrity is compromised. In such cases, we should verify the recaptcha, avoid using free VPN service, reset the network settings, and restart the phone solves the problem.

If you are sending quite many requests for data exchange from a particular device, then Google might identify that device as a robot or an automated bot.

The Silicon Valley Giants will recognize that many requests are continuously being sent from a single IP (mainly when using free or cheap VPN), which is against how a user would typically access a particular site.

As and when that happens, Google will send you a message that it has “detected unusual traffic” from your device. It will ask you to solve a captcha to verify that you are a human. Once you do so, you would be easily able to access that site. Unfortunately, things don’t seem relatively simple in the Apple ecosystem.

Our system has detected unusual traffic error in Safari iPhone

There have been numerous complaints from iPhone users that they are constantly getting bugged with the “detected unusual traffic” message. But the thing is, these users haven’t sent any abnormal amount of requests from their device.

Furthermore, even if they go ahead and solve the Captcha, it’s just a one-time relief. The next time they try and access the site, Captcha would re-appear. This is quite infuriating.

Fortunately, there does exist a few methods that are known to fix this issue. So without further ado, let’s check them out.

Restart iPhone

While it may sound like a simple fix, trust us, a simple reboot of the device has been known to work out wonders when it comes to this error. Users were able to quickly fix this issue with just a single restart of their iPhones.

Here are the simple steps to reboot your iPhone:

  1. Press and hold the volume + power button to bring up the Power menu.
    iPhone Switch Off or Power Buttons combination
  2. Slide the Power Off slider to turn off the device.
  3. Now, press and hold the power button for a few seconds until you see the Apple logo apple logo.

The device to power on, and then check if you can access the site without entering the captcha.

Close All Tabs & Restart Browser

If a lot of tabs are opened in your Safari browser, then each of them might ping Google at the same instance. As a result, Google might categorize it as invalid traffic and then show the error mentioned above.

Therefore, it is recommended that you close all the tabs, then restart the browser. Once that is done, see if the issue has been fixed or not.

Close Tabs in iPhone Safari browser

While manually opening each of the closed tabs later on, would call for some manual effort, it’s just a small price to pay if it rectifies this error.

Clear Safari Cookies

If the stored browser data gets corrupted, then it could result in quite a few issues. Likewise, it might even raise a false positive that the browser is constantly sending requests for data exchange.

This portrayal of the incorrect scenario could lead to quite a few issues, including the one we are currently dealing with. Therefore, the best way out is to delete this data and your browsing history right away.

Here are the steps to clear the cookies and website data from Safari on iPhone:

  1. Head over to the Settings app on your device.
  2. Choose the Safari app.
  3. Tap on the Clear History and Website Data commands.
    Clear History and Website Data from Safari iPhone
  4. Wait for the process to complete, and then verify if the issue has been fixed or not.

Clearing cookies might sign you out of various sites; however, your stored information would remain secure. You would have to re-login to those sites.

Turn on HTTP/3

This issue is primarily imminent with the users who are using the carrier data rather than the WiFi. While Google has made a switch to HTTP/3, few carriers are still to follow.

So to be on the same page, it is recommended that you manually carry out this switch.

Here are the steps to enable HTTP/3 compatibility in Safari iPhone:

  1. Launch the Settings app on your device.
  2. Choose the Safari app on the Settings page.
  3. Tap on Advanced and head over to the Experimental WebKit Features section.
  4. Now turn on the toggle next to HTTP/3.
    Toggle HTTP/3 in Safari Experimental WebKit
  5. Restart your browser and check if it gives out the desirable result.

This newer version of the Hypertext Transfer Protocol is much faster than its predecessor, but there is still some catching up left to do by many network providers.

Perform a Network Reset

In some instances, an incorrect network configuration might send unnecessary requests to a particular site. When that happens, Google is bound to send you the detected unusual traffic message on your Safari browser.

While manually identifying the network issue is indeed a tough job, what you could do is revert all the network settings to their default state. Just make sure to save all your WiFi passwords before proceeding.

Here are the steps to reset network settings on iPhone or iOS:

  1. Launch the Settings app and go to the General section.
  2. Choose the Reset tab within General settings.
  3. Tap on the Reset Network Settings command.
    Reset Network Settings in Safari iOS
  4. Restart your Safari browser.

Once the reset is complete, connect to your WiFi and check if the error message has disappeared or not.

Performing a network reset would also reset the carrier data, APNs, and WiFi passwords. However, with most of these data synced with your Apple ID, restoring them wouldn’t be much trouble.

Also, make sure that you disable the cheap or free VPN services that are generally shared IP addresses with multiple users.

Bottom Line: Fix Detected Unusual Traffic

The guide on how to fix the Google detected unusual traffic message on your Safari iPhone. We have shared a few different working methods for the same.

In my case, turning on the HTTP-over-QUIC option (more commonly known as HTTP/3) and then performing a browser restart spelled out success.

In some cases, the JavaScript and cookie settings also play a vital role. Hence, make sure to turn on or keep JS and cookie settings enabled within the browser.

On that note, do let us know which method managed to work out in your favor to resolve the issue of detecting unusual traffic on Safari.

Lastly, if you've any thoughts on How to Fix: Google Detected Unusual Traffic on Safari iPhone, then feel free to drop in below comment box.

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Sadique Hassan

Sadique is a Bachelor of Computer Application in Computer Science and an MBA professional. He became a tech writer by choice and has continued pursuing it for the last 7+ years. He is keenly interested in open-source technology like Android and also loves troubleshooting the tech. Connect him on LinkedIn.

7 thoughts on “How to Fix: Google Detected Unusual Traffic on Safari iPhone”

  1. We resolved this by changing the Search Provider for Safari (iOS 15) to Bing (Settings > Safari > Search Engine change to Bing or to any other search provider if Bing is the issue).
    Perform one search using this new provider, then change it back to the original ‘problem’ provider.

  2. I tried everything on the list except the ‘Reset’ and nothing worked. A couple of times it seemed to work but after a few time of using Google it returned. I’m waiting to try the ‘Reset’ until I’m able to do a full backup first.

    I tried turning off ‘Settings/Safari/Fraudulent Website Warning’ and there have not been any errors since, (over 6 hrs now). I don’t know how critical it is to have that enabled, but after I do a backup and a ‘Reset’ I’ll try to test it again with the Fraudulent Website Warning enabled.

  3. I tried all of the above, including Network Reset, changing the provider and disabling the Fraudulent Website Warning. (Thank you to both contributors for the extra suggestions).

    Unfortunately I am still getting the same Google message so I’ll have to keep looking for a solution

  4. I didn’t see this mentioned in the possible solutions. apologies if I missed it. In my case, I discovered my VPN service (ExpressVPN) was connected when I didn’t need it. After I disconnected, I stopped getting the Google message. Might be worth checking in case, like me, you have your VPN connection running in the background….

    1. I changed the actual settings in the Safari browser on the bottom of the Home Page > Edit > Toggled different settings on/off.

      I’m working through which one is the culprit but it appears that the “iCloud Tabs” might have had a couple of tabs that hit Google EVERY TIME a new browser window was opened looking like “high traffic.” Google denies service to what appears like a machine hitting it with high concurrency (like a denial of service attack or software scrapers). That’s why the Captcha pops up.

      Fingers crossed.

  5. It’s not often you read an article and what they suggest works straight away.. thanks for this.. I cleared my cookies and hey presto.. probably should’ve thought of that before but..oops. Thanks for you work, I appreciate it.

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