Mozilla Rolls Out DNS Over HTTPS for Users in the US

Firefox users from the United States will have the web browser’s DNS over HTTPS feature enabled by default in the coming weeks . Starting today, Mozilla is going to roll out the feature to users from the United States and making it available to users worldwide. The core difference is that DNS over HTTPS will be set to enabled for US users of the browser while it will default to off for everyone else.

DNS over HTTPS is currently tested or introduced in major desktop browsers and operating systems. Microsoft plans to integrate the feature natively into Windows 10, and companies like Google or Opera Software have started to test it in their web browsers.

It encrypts DNS traffic so that listeners cannot use the information anymore to determine the websites a user visits using DNS and malicious actors may no longer manipulate these lookups either.

We do this by performing DNS lookups in an encrypted HTTPS connection. This helps hide your browsing history from attackers on the network, helps prevent data collection by third parties on the network that ties your computer to websites you visit.

Mozilla revealed plans in 2019 to roll out DNS over HTTPS to users from the US in that year. The roll out got delayed but Mozilla is finally ready to start the rollout of the feature.

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Firefox users who want  to change the DNS over HTTPS configuration in the web browser may consult our DNS over HTTPS guide for Firefox to do so.

If you just want a quick on/off guide, here it is:

  1. Load about:preferences#general in the web browser’s address bar.
  2. Scroll down to Network Settings and activate the Settings button to open the network configuration.
  3. Scroll down on the page and check the “Enable DNS over HTTPS” option on it.
  4. Now you are able to select one of the trusted providers — Cloudflare or NextDNS — or select Custom if you want to use another provider and have the URL ready that you need to supply in that case.
  5. Click ok to complete the process.
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Mozilla notes that it “explores enabling DoH in other regions” and that it is “working to add more providers as trusted resolvers” to the program.


Closing Words

DNS over HTTPS improves user privacy and security while using the Firefox web browser; that is a good thing. Mozilla launches the feature with two trusted providers — Cloudflare and NextDNS — and an option to add a custom provider as well if that is preferred.

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While the introduction of the feature has been rocky, Mozilla was criticized for selecting Cloudflare as the sole provider in the beginning and for a Shield study, it is now at a point where users may select different providers right from the Settings.

Now You: What is your take on the rollout?

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