mailing list archives
Re: US internet providers hijacking users' search queries
From: Cameron Byrne <cb.list6 () gmail com>
Date: Mon, 8 Aug 2011 16:47:23 -0700
On Aug 8, 2011 4:24 PM, "Christopher Morrow" <morrowc.lists () gmail com>
On Sat, Aug 6, 2011 at 10:03 PM, Scott Helms <khelms () ispalliance net>
Not trying to be obtuse, but none of the technical docs you cite appear
talk about HTTP proxies nor does the newswire report have any technical
details. I have tested several of the networks listed in the report and
none of the cases I saw was there HTTP proxy activity. Picking up on
WCCP/TCS isn't that hard (I used to install those myself) so unless
some functionality in IOS and/or JUNOS that allows I don't see it
Paxfire can operate all of the proxies they want but the network
infrastructure has to be able to pass the traffic over to those proxies
I don't see it (on at least 3 of the networks cited).
barefruit/paxfire/nominum/etc all do essentially the same thing:
1) install a dns-appliance in-line (some form of in-line, there are
lots of options, it's not really important in the end which is used)
between 'cache resolver' and 'user'. (184.108.40.206 has a paxfire
appliance literally in-line between it's customer facing port and the
2) chose a set/subset of queries to falsify answers for (nxdomain
only? autosearch.msn.com? *.google.com? *?)
3) run a farm of servers somewhere else (in the case of paxfire they
are the jomax.net servers:
;; QUESTION SECTION:
;asdkjad912jd.123adsad.com. IN A
;; ANSWER SECTION:
asdkjad912jd.123adsad.com. 60 IN A 220.127.116.11
asdkjad912jd.123adsad.com. 60 IN A 18.104.22.168
;; AUTHORITY SECTION:
asdkjad912jd.123adsad.com. 65535 IN NS WSC2.JOMAX.NET.
asdkjad912jd.123adsad.com. 65535 IN NS WSC1.JOMAX.NET.
In the case of barefruit it's another complex and in the case of
nominum it's a third complex ...
4) accept http/https/etc on the complex of servers, funnel you an
answer which is essentially 'hostname == search-query'. For non-http
most of these complexes are SUPPOSED to not permit a connect to
happen... for jomax at least they don't accept tcp/443, they do accept
25 though :(
5) profit if users click on these results.
It's not black magic, it's annoying and wrong for some versions
(depending upon your ethics I guess?) of wrong :( I wish ISP's would
stop doing this, and it seems that some folk have luck twisting arms
at ISP's to make this stop.
Some people believe the search results are a better user experience than the
error page they would otherwise receive. The "awesome bar" is a similar
Re: US internet providers hijacking users' search queries Anthony Pardini (Aug 06)