Here is what our policy says:
When you use Infura as your default RPC provider in MetaMask, Infura will not not store wallet account address information when a MetaMask user makes a “read” request through Infura, for example in order to check account balances within MetaMask. We therefore can never associate wallet account addresses to an internet protocol (IP) address based on this type of user activity.
Infura collects wallet and IP address information in connection with “write” requests, also known as transactions, when MetaMask users broadcast transactions through Infura’s RPC endpoints. The purpose of this collection is to ensure successful transaction propagation, execution, and other important service functionality such as load balancing and DDoS protection, as provided by Infura;
However, if you’re using your own Ethereum node or a third party RPC provider with MetaMask, then neither Infura nor MetaMask will collect your IP address or Ethereum wallet address (but you should be aware your information will be subject to whatever information collection performed by the RPC provider you are using and their terms regarding such collection).
We understand how much our users value privacy – as a core principle of web3, we stand with you on this.
In the interests of clarity, and to expand on a few key user concerns, we want to make clear that:
- MetaMask must have an RPC provider to work, and an RPC provider must collect your IP and wallet address to work. It would otherwise be impossible for you to send transactions or use your wallet in any meaningful way. Your wallet address is a necessary part of the request to the blockchain; your IP address is needed so that requested information can be routed back to you, the requester.
What's an RPC?
RPC stands for remote procedure call, which describes the process of requesting and sending information to and from the blockchain.
- MetaMask does not collect your IP address. MetaMask does, however, route your information to an RPC provider to fulfil your requested transaction.
- Infura is the default RPC provider to maximize convenience, and due to its reliability and capacity. Infura is actively pursuing greater decentralization and privacy-boosting technology. You can switch to another RPC provider if you wish, or even set up your own local node and connect it to MetaMask. However, as referenced in the policy text above, you’ll need to make sure that any other RPC provider handles your data (IP address, wallet addresses) properly, since we have zero control over this.
- No matter what they say, other web3 wallets that work similarly to MetaMask will also be collecting your IP address and transaction source/destination wallet addresses to function. It’s unavoidable.
- We are not harvesting your data for profit. This is not web2.