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Comcast reportedly redirecting DNS traffic

updated 05:05 pm EDT, Tue June 9, 2009

Comcast DNS hijacking

An angry Comcast Internet subscriber has written a complaint (caution: may not be safe for work) that alleges the provider is intercepting his DNS requests to other, non-Comcast DNS servers and redirecting them to its own. The author says Comcast takes UDP traffic bound for port 53 on any server and redirects it to their own, making it nearly impossible for users to use different DNS servers, including their own.

Comcast has reportedly "hijacked" DNS requests in the past for nonexistent servers when users misspelled website addresses, for example, but if this latest accusation proves true, it would be a significant blow to net neutrality by favoring the provider's services over another's. Comcast is not alone in this practice, however.

The user does suggest a method of checking for whether or not the problem is present in users' own connections and even offers a solution, but it's intended for experienced individuals rather than average customers. Comcast has not responded to the accusations. [via Slashdot]

By Electronista Staff
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  1. andrewbw

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jan 2001


    epic fail, MacNN.

    If you read the Slashdot article, you'll see about 99 percent of respondents who tested their own connections saw no such blocking. Further discussion suggests the story was a plant to drive traffic (and therefore advertising impressions) to the original blog.

  1. Iritscen

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jun 2009


    Cynical much?

    I hate when people draw the most cynical conclusion possible. The /. poster readily admits that it might be a regional thing, in which case one would expect 99% of readers to not see that happening in their area.

    I think it's more worthwhile to mention that the blogger was unable to say whether it was Comcast doing the redirecting, or Earthlink. So it seems wrong to only name Comcast as the culprit, esp. when they've denied it vehemently (contrary to what this article says about them not having responded), and Earthlink has not commented on this at all (yet).

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001


    Re: cynical

    So it seems wrong to only name Comcast as the culprit, esp. when they've denied it vehemently

    Oh, Comcast has denied it vehemently. Well, we know they'd never lie. They're a cable company for goodness sakes.

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