Comcast is the first ISP that joins Firefox’s Trusted Recursive Resolver Program

Comcast is the first Internet Service Provider that has been accepted into Firefox’s Trusted Recursive Resolver Program.

Mozilla, just like Google, Opera and other browser makers, started to integrate DNS-over-HTTPS in the organization’s Firefox web browser. DNS-over-HTTPS is one method of securing DNS information; in this particular case, HTTPS encryption is used to defend DNS lookups against attacks and privacy invasions, e.g. attacks that manipulate the data.

Regular DNS lookups are in plain text and that means that it is possible under certain circumstances to monitor or manipulate the information, e.g. to change the target of a request.

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Mozilla created the Trusted Recursive Resolver Program early on to ensure that DNS providers would adhere to “modern standards for privacy and security”. In particular, joining the program requires the following:

  • Limiting data — DNS data may only be used for “the purpose of operating the service”, may not be retained for longer than 24 hours, and cannot be “sold, shared, or licensed to other parties”.
  • Transparency — Companies are required to post a public privacy notice that reveals how “data is retained and how it is used”.
  • Blocking & Modification — Companies may not block, filter, modify or provide inaccurate responses unless “required by law”.

DNS over HTTPS configuration is available in Firefox but the feature is only being tested in the United States at the time of writing. Mozilla’s way of working with companies through the Trusted Recursive Resolver Program is different to how companies such as Google handle DNS over HTTPS. Google’s Chrome browser will use DNS over HTTPS automatically if the system’s DNS provider supports it, Mozilla decided to cooperate with companies that joined its program.

Firefox users may check out DNS over HTTPS configuration guide for instructions on how to set this up in the browser. Comcast customers will benefit from the change automatically provided that they have not changed the DNS provider on the system.

Comcast started DNS over HTTPS tests in October 2019 according to Mozilla. It is the first Internet Service Provider that joins Firefox’s program. Two companies joined the program prior to Comcast: Cloudflare and NextDNS. It is likely that additional companies will join the program eventually.

Now You: do you use DNS over HTTPS already?

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June 26, 2020
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