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EU's Proposed DNS Resolver Blocks Illegal URLs (For Free!)

The EU wants to build its own DNS resolver called “DNS4EU.”

The European Commission published a call for proposals that included details about the government-run DNS resolver on January 12, 2022. The call for proposals contained more than enough information to predict the direction of this project. But their goals are straightforward enough.

The deployment of DNS4EU aims to address such consolidation of DNS resolution in the hands of a few companies, which renders the resolution process itself vulnerable in case of significant events affecting one major provider.

They actually published the plans for the DNS resolver in December 2020 as a part of the “EU’s Cybersecurity Strategy for the Digital Decade.” The 2020 document contains much of the same language:

“[P]eople and organizations in the EU increasingly rely on a few public DNS resolvers operated by non-EU entities. Such consolidation of DNS resolution in the hands of a few companies renders the resolution process itself vulnerable in case of significant events affecting one major provider and makes it more difficult for EU authorities to address possible malicious cyberattacks and major geopolitical and technical incidents.”

The call for proposals listed the project requirements. Most of the requirements are standard. The concept of feature parity comes to mind. At the site, the list of requirements includes a short description of the requirement. Since the majority of the features are not interesting to me, I will simply include a concise summary instead of the entire requirement’s description.

  • High adoption rate through targetting the entire EU as a customer base;
  • High reliability and uptime, as well as low latency of DNS resolution;
  • Broad accessibility (low barrier of entry);
  • “Widely discoverable” by users and services;
  • Opt-in paid premium services for enhanced security;
  • Opt-in and fully transparent parental control filtering services;
  • To include the “latest DNS security and privacy-enhancing technologies”;
  • GDPR compliant;
  • A federated infrastructure spread throughout the EU
  • “State-of-the-art protection against cybersecurity threats by blocking malware, phishing and other threats”;
  • To include DoT and DoH and be fully IPv6 compliant;
  • No monetization of personal data

And you knew it was coming:

  • Lawful filtering: Filtering of URLs leading to illegal content based on legal requirements applicable in the EU or national jurisdictions (e.g. based on court orders), in full compliance with EU rules.”

This seems like a pointless exercise on its own. Perhaps they will introduce legislation that requires people to obtain a license to change their DNS resolver? How silly.

TorrentFreak pointed to an oddity. “[I]t will offer better security options for “customers” who pay, which seems strange for a government-backed service.”

I can’t envision a world where people voluntarily switch to an (openly) state-controlled DNS resolver. The existence of premium options makes me think that individuals might not actually be the targeted userbase here. Would a large corporation pay the government to do the DNS thing? Probably.

Very boring: The EU’s Cybersecurity Strategy for the Digital Decade (pdf)

It's Called We Engage In A Mild Amount of Tomfoolery
9b21b590 Fri, Jan 21, 2022

EU never gets shit done. This is all talk bruh

ea912180 Fri, Jan 21, 2022

Bing Chilling

d82703e0 Fri, Jan 21, 2022

but people will always find a way to bypass this innit

7be1ee80 Fri, Jan 21, 2022

Could still be better than american resolvers that do “UNlawful” filtering based on opinion.

513b48b0 Fri, Jan 21, 2022

In general I agree and would rather know where the line is drawn than have some arbitrary moral authority decide at some random time. However, basically any large company in the U.S. is in lockstep with the U.S. government as far as narrative goes.

Also, FWIW, Cloudflare held out a long time for an American company. 2017 before caving to demands from the public.

f2680850 Sun, Jan 23, 2022

All I have to say is FUCK the EU! They’ve become more than what it originally was supposed to be, an organ that would improve trade.

Now they just power hungry, corrupt legal mafia

ef07cac0 Tue, Jan 25, 2022


5e736af0 Tue, Jan 25, 2022

Does this affect the Tor network?

95b9f380 Thu, Jan 27, 2022

Not really in a way that would change things for the average end user

2e5c3810 Sun, Jan 30, 2022


Well yeah. We live in communism. Run by jews.

45c2e130 Tue, Feb 8, 2022

communism truly going more and more into these direction.
EU has no true power backed by the people of the nations since we have none of them elected and even if not to try banning encryption etc. Very sad seen freedom being attacked every day.

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