Disclaimer: I’m not a Comcast subscriber, but I play one on TV
Comcast has me scratching my head. A friend of mine pointed out the following post on the Comcast goofiness. For a long time now they have been messing with DNS and if you happen to screw up and look up a site that does not exist in DNS, you get the Comcast ad page. Many of the tech savvy folks out there simply got around that by putting up their own caching server or using opendns. I know I did when I found out that Mediacom started messing with DNS like this.
Apparently they have upped their game by routing all DNS traffic, no matter what, to their servers. You have no way around this, you WILL use their servers.
I disagree with the first practice of just having a * domain that has everything mis-spelled go to a certain site of yours. Now that they have taken this to a new level, I think it is quickly climbing up the all time ranks of dangerous and stupid.
Really, dangerous? Well, say I’m a person that has highly questionable morals and decides that the best way to attack a competative ISP is to go after their DNS servers. I could try and do some sort of DDoS. Or, the better, more devious approach is to attempt a DNS cache poisoning on their servers. Not always the easiest, but when done properly can have some pretty devastating effects. Now, I trust that Comcast has employed some top notch admins over there so I highly doubt that they are going to let their guard down here, but we’re all humans. We still make mistakes.
Why is this stupid? Honestly, do you click on the ads on one of these pages? Or do you swear to yourself, type it in correctly or load up google and search for what you really want? It just seems like a lot of hassle to implement and all they are really doing is pissing off their customers. They’re trying to milk every last cent out of them and the customers are not stupid. They know what comcast is trying to do. They’re pissed off and eventually they will leave.
The sad part is, other ISPs have already taken up the first goofy solution that Comcast put in place. Its only a matter of time until more people adopt this new tactic. For me personally, I’m going to smack the crap out of the first person that mentions this as a solution that we should deploy. I set up our DNS servers and I refuse to break the internet. I also have a higher respect for my customers. They’re all intelligent, reasonable, and good looking right?