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EU-based DNS Internet Infrastructure Beginning to Take Shape, Planned to Onboard 100 Million Users

The EU has been pushing for the development of DNS4EU, a public European DNS resolver with built-in filtering capabilities, as a way to strengthen the “digital sovereignty” of the EU and protect citizens, companies, and public institutions from phishing attacks and malware. In December 2021, a consortium of 13 public and private companies from ten European countries were granted the project to build a public DNS resolution service tailored for the EU. The roll-out of the project will take three years, with the aim of getting 100 million people on board. A year later, the project appears to be moving forward.

The big picture: What are the said key reasons for DNS4EU?

  • Goal of EU’s new DNS service is to make digital infrastructure less dependent on foreign service providers, namely US-based tech companies
  • Consolidation of DNS resolutions in the hands of few resolvers is a security risk
  • As of January 2022, about 12.2% of EU residents use public resolvers managed by California-headquartered companies
  • Non-public resolvers within the EU accounted for merely 0.2% of total queries, while those sent to non-public resolvers outside the EU made up 0.9%
  • EU wants its own DNS to enforce strong data protection and privacy rules, which can have a positive impact on the lives of ordinary people

For now, the service is not aimed at regular people and will not be enforced on them, although it may recommend it to the public. The consortium also stated that the EU won’t have any say in how the service is run and that no logs linking to particular persons’ IP addresses will be stored. That is, if law enforcement requests such information, it won’t be able to be fulfilled.

Dig deeper: Last year Geoff Huston, APNIC’s Chief Scientist, wrote a thoughtful and widely read piece on the DNS4EU project published here on CircleID.

By CircleID Reporter

CircleID’s internal staff reporting on news tips and developing stories. Do you have information the professional Internet community should be aware of? Contact us.

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