Working Methods of DNS Poisoning Protection
DNS is the center of internet life. It connects a specific computer IP address to interact with websites. Security experts search for relevant DNS zones, servers, etc., to get more knowledge on this topic, because DNS can reveal a huge amount of a user’s personal data.
This is why the so-called DNS poisoning attack has become more frequent. This is a fairly popular way for hackers to send a potential victim to a malicious site instead of the one they are looking for. Such an action allows them to steal personal data and information, as well as money.
We’ve already talked about DDoS attacks. Read more about them in the article DDoS Attack: What is it and How to Trace it?
This article will look at how DNS poisoning occurs and how to protect yourself from it effectively.
What is DNS Poisoning?
First, DNS (Domain Name System) converts a domain name (www.хххххх.com) to its IP (126.96.36.199) and vice versa.
There is a danger called “DNS cache poisoning“. In this case, the attacker “tricks” the DNS server by writing invalid DNS data to the cache. This allows it to redirect user requests to a different host than the one they need.
It is important to note a few DNS-related terms:
- IP address is a numeric identifier for each computer or server. You can use it to find out who the device belongs to, as well as the necessary data about it.
- A domain is a specific text name that is used to connect to specific sites. For example, the domain www.xxxxx.com allows you to decrypt the actual ID of a specific site or its IP.
- DNS is used to convert a domain to a specific IP that matches it.
In addition, there are things called DNS servers. Today, we’ll speak about the most important and famous one – resolving name server.
*Note: There are many other DNS servers.
Resolving server is the most basic component of any DNS lookup process. It is a specific request that is required for a targeted IP address search.
How does DNS lookup work?
The DNS lookup scheme looks like this:
Initially, any OS or browser can remember the necessary IP address that was originally attached to a specific domain name. This information can be obtained from the device’s internal memory or cache.
If none of the parts knows the real location of IP address, the search process will be continued.
First, the operating system requests to resolve the server to a specific IP. This process starts when the server finds the correct address. Then, this address will be sent to the particular browser.
The DNS lookup process itself is an important part of the internet. However, it is also a storehouse of various vulnerabilities that hackers can exploit and then start DNS poisoning or DNS spoofing.
How do DNS poisoning and spoofing work?
DNS spoofing is a threat that simulates legitimate traffic redirection to another domain. In this case, the victim, who does not suspect anything, gets to a malicious site.
DNS poisoning is a part of spoofing that responds to any malicious IP. After that, it remembers that bad site and redirects the data to another domain.
There are other DNS attacks such as:
- Man-in-the-middle attack. The process is simple: a hacker stands between DNS server and browser to copy all the traffic.
- DNS hijack. This is a complete reconfiguration of the transmitted traffic to a malicious website.
- DNS cache poisoning via email. This attack is carried out through spam emails. You will receive an email with a URL that will automatically infect your computer. Instead of a link, the email may contain a banner or image, which you can automatically click on to infect your computer.
Real danger can even be in email messages. Read the article Email Bomb: How to Hide from Attack and be prepared for a possible cyber threat.
All these attacks have the following risks and consequences that are dangerous not only for your device but also for the data.
- Theft. The main purpose of DNS redirection to another domain may be identity theft. At the same time, the hacker receives such data as bank cards, passwords, correspondence and any personal information. To do this, they will send you special redirectors that will redirect you to phishing sites.
- Infection. Malware that can harm your device is a serious problem. After all, today, there are a huge number of such programs that can destabilize your device’s operation and completely stop it.
Do you know all types of malware? There are many internet threats you need to know about. In the article Types of Malware, you can get up-to-date information on this topic and protection methods.
- Remote upgrade. DNS spoofing can stop all updates that your device is automatically linked to. Thus, it will be exposed to any internet threats.
- Censorship. DNS allows you to view only authorized websites. This situation exists, for example, in China, where the government controls the Internet. DNS spoofing is used for this purpose.
If you are interested in internet censorship, you can read more about its pros and cons in the article What Is The Issue With Internet Censorship.
Methods of DNS poisoning prevention
Unfortunately, there are just a few ways to stop such a type of attack. However, the owners of sites and servers still have great opportunities in this matter. Therefore, the efforts of the two parties can still prevent DNS attacks.
First, let’s look at tips for site owners. These include such tools as:
- Tools for spoofing detection. As a rule, such tools can predict attack before it will be done.
- DNSSEC. This is a special domain name security extension. There are various types of such extensions, but each of them shows a specific “verifies real label” which helps to avoid fake websites.
- E2EE. This is an end-to-end encryption that restricts access to specific data. Therefore, no one can duplicate the site’s security certificate.
Now let’s look at some tips for users:
- Avoid clicking on unfamiliar links.
- Do a full analysis of your computer more often to detect malware and prevent it in time.
- Clean your DNS cache at least twice a month.
- Try to use a VPN service that can provide secure web traffic.
- Use uNS instead of DNS. It is a secure alternative to DNS developed by Utopia P2P.
If you want to know more about these tips, you can read the article Fully-Fledged Guide on Ways to Protect Your Data Online.