[SATLUG] Verizon feeding ads on URL errors

Charles Hogan cd_satl at futuretechsolutions.com
Mon Jun 2 19:08:23 CDT 2008


Bruce Dubbs wrote:
> Don Crowder wrote:
>> When I make an error in typing a URL into the browser address bar I 
>> get a page of garbage from Verizon instead of an ordinary "page not 
>> found" page.  For example, here's a screenshot of the page I get if I 
>> manually type in the URL for google but leave out the 'dot' before the 
>> 'com':
>> http://www.don-guitar.com/photos/vz-url-error.png
>>
>> I'm really annoyed about this but I'm also aware than I haven't enough 
>> education to understand the full implications of what's taking place 
>> so I'd greatly appreciate a newbie-friendly analysis with an 
>> explanation of the ramifications.
>>
>> Yes, in case you're wondering, I'm trying to take advantage of your IT 
>> knowledge and experience (since I have almost none) but if I use the 
>> information in my ezine or a blog rant I'll give you due credit.  :)
> 
> What is happening is that your ISPs DNS server is redirecting your DNS 
> query. You can probably fix the problem with using a different DNS 
> server as specified in /etc/resolv.conf.
> 
> To test, try
> 
>   dig googlecom
> 
> You should get
> 
> ;; ->>HEADER<<- opcode: QUERY, status: NXDOMAIN, ...
> 
> and not an ip address.
> 
> Two issues though.  If you are using DHCP, you need to make sure that 
> /etc/resolv.conf is not overwritten every time you boot up by the dhcp 
> client.
> 
> Also, I don't know of a public DNS server that would accommodate 
> anyone.  Others may have a good suggestion.  You have to trust the DNS 
> server because if it gives you the wrong ip address for a site, that 
> would be pretty hard to distinguish and the odds of successful phishing 
> would go up quite a bit.
> 
>   -- Bruce
> 
> 
This sounds like the most likely culprit to me.  Gotta love the way our 
ISP's enjoy feeding us whatever advertising/etc... that they feel they 
can get away with.

One solution to this issue would be to run your own DNS server and have 
that query the root servers directly.  I started doing this several 
months ago because my ISP's DNS servers were rather slow and non-responsive.

Charlie


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