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[liberationtech] Internet Circumvention Tools and Methods: Evaluation and Review

Sky (Jim Schuyler) sky at
Fri Apr 15 12:32:02 PDT 2011

Yes, agreed that a specific -customer- of OpenDNS can choose blocking options, which would be the case for Apple or anyone else of that size.  I was jumping ahead to a possible question of whether OpenDNS -itself- blocks Tor, and from my experience it does not. I use OpenDNS "basic" services and I have not yet encountered a blocked site - period - although I know they block malware and phishing sites even at the basic level.  

I depend more on "Google Safe Browsing" blocks in my browser, which I see only a few times a year in my general web use, but have yet to see an OpenDNS block.  Observation only.

In terms of systems that attempt to scan and classify sites, I used for a project last year - they have 80+ categories for the millions (as I recall) of sites they classify - I found their service to be valuable but hard to fathom how quick it was to react to changes in status of sites, since I was particularly looking for sites that had been caught handing out drive by downloads (innocently or not).  I needed quicker response (in terms of "on the list today, off the list tomorrow") than they provide.  They also were not ready to discuss how they make their decisions, though I know that community input is a part of it.  I didn't have the time to push the issue and no longer have a need for their services, so haven't tried.


-Keeping the flame of free speech 
      and human rights alive online

On Apr 15, 2011, at 11:36 AM, Tom Ritter wrote:

>> OpenDNS doesn't block Tor. I've used OpenDNS forever and exclusively, and never found anything to be blocked.
> OpenDNS lets the account holder configure the block settings.  You can
> choose among categories like 'Adult', 'Auctions', 'Movies',
> 'Non-profits' (and so on), by Security Categories (block
> malware/botnets; phishing; and RFC1918 addresses), and block specific
> domains.  So each 'location' (source IP or IP range) using OpenDNS may
> have different settings. (IP Ranges require manual verification)
> Tor is probably in the "Proxy/Anonymizer" group: "Sites providing
> proxy bypass information or services. Also, sites that allow the user
> to surf the net anonymously, including sites that allow the user to
> send anonymous emails." But I can't test that at the moment to
> confirm.
> -tom
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