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Verizon DNS Headaches

Verizon recently started sending users of its residential broadband services (DSL and FiOS) a Verizon Search page instead of an error page if they attempt to visit a web site that doesn’t exist. They are doing this by using the Domain Name System (DNS). If you request a page at a domain name that doesn’t exist, such as, you’ll get a page filled with Verizon’s suggestions of the page you looking for, plus some advertising. If you don’t want to see this page (Advanced Web Search), you need to change your network device’s settings (your router or DSL modem) or your computer’s network settings.

One amazing thing is that Verizon appears to be recommending that you use the same IP address for a Domain Name Server for both servers that your system will query. Screenshot from Verizon Online’s help:

Instead of relying on your ISP to provide your DNS, I recommend you use a third party service, such as OpenDNS. You can use their name servers,which I’ve found to be much more responsive and customizable than Verizon’s. You can set certain domains to be blocked (advertizers? porn?, you can see the stats on how many requests you are submitting each day. You can even turn on the ability for a help page, similar to Verizon’s, to appear when you attempt a visit to a misspelled domain name. Their name servers are currently set to be at and

Other places discussing this issue include: