Congress Killed Your Privacy, What Next? - Step Two: Change your DNS serverscan now (unless Trump does something unexpected) be sold by your ISP without them needing your consent.
The first thing you should do is find (and use!) a VPN. Sometimes that isn't feasible, or is beyond your technical prowess. Fair enough. Changing your DNS servers, though, is a fairly simple matter. (If you know what you're doing and want the DNS server addresses, skip to the bottom.)
If you don't know, DNS is pretty much the "address book" of the internet. Most ISPs modems and routers default to giving you their DNS servers. To strain the analogy a little bit, that's like your computer or phone calling their operator every time you look up anything online. Giving them that data literally gives them a record of everywhere you've decided to point your web browser. Also, it makes it really easy to censor the internet when you control the "address book".
Finally, changing your DNS server might speed up your internet a bit, so yay!
If you're using a VPN, you're probably already using their DNS servers, so you're covered.
If you're mostly worried about speed, you can check out the Namebench tool at https://code.google.com/p/namebench/.
Often, people just talk about Google's public DNS or the OpenDNS system (now owned by Cisco). There's other offerings that don't log or censor your DNS request. DNS.watch seems to be a good offering as well as Free.DNS's open free, and public offerings. You might also want to check out the OpenNIC project, which I just learned about while researching this post.
There's guides from Google, the How-To Geek, Lifewire, OpenDNS, or Greycoder to set up your system appropriately; the nice thing is that when you know the numbers to put in, whatever guide makes more sense for you will work.
IMPORTANT: I have not included IPv6 servers below. If you're using IPv6 please check to make sure your DNS requests aren't leaking.
IMPORTANT: If your router or computer has more than two entries for DNS and the provider you choose only has two entries, you have these options:
- 0.0.0.0 to fall back to your ISP DNS (DO NOT WANT!)
- 10.0.0.0 (a non-usable IP) if you don't want to use any other servers
- Another DNS server of your choice (Do not duplicate one of the first two DNS's or it will default to 0.0.0.0)
DNS Watch Servers
Free DNS servers