Norton ConnectSafe Alternatives

Norton ConnectSafe is a free public DNS service, probably one of the best when it comes to security. The threats were blocked at DNS level to keep the users safe even when the users were not running an antivirus on their systems. Since Norton ConnectSafe is scheduled to retire on November 15th, 2018, we would suggest some other Norton ConnectSafe alternatives for a safer browsing experience.

Norton ConnectSafe’s public DNS service was introduced by Symantec in 2010 under the name Symantec ConnectSafe. Later in 2014 it was renamed to Norton ConnectSafe. ConnectSafe makes use of Norton Safe Web for crowd sourced security where users can report a site to be safe or not safe.

The biggest advantage of using a secure DNS service is that it will scan for threats when the computer requests for resources on the Internet. If a threat is detected, it is blocked even before reaching the user’s computer. This enhances the system speed and overall browsing experience.

Note: Also check out the best parental control software AND DNS Angel.

Let’s talk about some Norton DNS alternatives which will make your browsing experience safer.

Norton ConnectSafe DNS Alternatives

Google PublicDNS

Google PublicDNS will change your settings for DNS servers from Internet Service Providers to Google PublicDNS. Google PublicDNS provides some flavor of security as service logs are saved for 1 to 2 days for troubleshooting purposes. While in permanent logs, personal information is minimized and most of the information is deleted after 14 days.

  • In order to put Google Public DNS on the computer go to the Control Panel
  • Click Network and Internet ->Network and Sharing Center  and click on  Change adapter settings.
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  • You will see a screen with a network connection.Select the connection. i-e if you select wireless connection, right-click Wireless Network Connection and then go to Properties. If the password or any other dialogue box appears, provide the required password .
  • Select the Networking tab and then double click the Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4) or Internet Protocol Version 6 (TCP/IPv6) .
  • Click Advanced and select the DNS tab.
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  • Note down any DNS provided there for future reference and remove them from the window and press  OK.
  • Go to the Preferred DNS server or Alternate DNS server and replace those addresses with the IP addresses of the Google DNS servers:
  • For IPv4: 8.8.8.8 and/or 8.8.4.4
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  • For IPv6: 2001:4860:4860::8888 and/or 2001:4860:4860::8844.
  • Now run the following command in command prompt:
    ipconfig /flushdns

OpenDNS

OpenNDS is a DNS service provided by Cisco which is most secure and reliable. It improves the performance and blocks all the phishing sites. Commercial plans include a feature to view the history of your 1 year Internet browsing and restrict access to specific websites. This feature is included in OpenDNS Family Shield and OpenDNS Home but the duration of locked down environment i-e to specific websites is different. It even works on mobile devices.

The preferred DNS is 208.67.222.222 and the secondary DNS is 208.67.220.220.

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To set it up on other devices like home routers, servers and smart devices, you can check the settings here.

The biggest benefit of OpenDNS is that you can configure and block access to website categories not suitable for your home or office. You can choose between categories or even blacklist or whitelist websites in the content filtering configuration panel. The only caveat is if you are configuring OpenDNS on a router, you will either need a router which supports OpenDNS or a router with static IP address. Otherwise, the settings will be disabled once the router IP changes.

Quad9

Quad9 is a IBM owned publicDNS service which has been designed to block malware and threats .It uses threat intelligence from leading cyber security companies. The analysis provided by them provides a perspective on what websites are safe and what sites have potential threats. You will not be allowed to enter the website which contains the malware.

The same method needs to be followed as used for Google PublicDNS. The preferred DNS server is 9.9.9.9 and the alternate DNS server is 149.112.112.112

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The organization can update the DNS settings on the central DHCP server which will update all clients. No action is needed on end devices.

CloudFlare

Cloudflare is the fastest public DNS  which is used for managing IP address allocation for the Asia Pacific and Oceania regions. The main concern is on performance and privacy. Even if you visit an encrypted site by an ISP, your identity is still saved. But using Cloudflare can solve this problem. The logs are maintained for 24 hours and then get deleted.  So your privacy is maintained over the Internet.

The preferred public DNS for IPv4 is 1.1.1.1 and the alternative is 1.0.0.1
While the prefeered for IPv6 is 2606:4700:4700::1111 and alternative is 2606:4700:4700::1001

The iPhone, Android, Linux, and MAC setup instructions can be seen here.

Comodo Secure DNS is another DNS service which is not very popular but is very effective when it comes to security and malware blocking.

Conclusion

Domain Name System DNS is an essential part of computing if you are connected to any kind of network. It’s better to use a secure DNS which can shield off Internet threats from your computer. Always choose a DNS service with built-in malware blocking. This will keep you safe over the Internet.

If you are a network administrator and use local recursive DNS, using a secure public DNS will make sure that your network remains free from Internet viruses. This is especially true when you have limited control over your network computers.

There are several other PublicDNS but these are some of the best options available. You have to look at exactly what you need if you are more concerned about malicious sites and viruses then choose DNS accordingly. So which PublicDNS have you chosen to make your Internet more secure?

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