23 thoughts on “Verizon Redirects Typo Traffic to its Own Search Service”

  1. This is a real pain. The automatic redirect prevents editing of URL typos. Even a one-letter error leads to typing the whole thing again, since the URL isn’t in the address bar to be edited after the redirect. With a domain squatter, at least I don’t have to retype the whole thing.

  2. I have Verizon FiOS and this doesn’t happen to me. I work on a Mac so maybe it is a PC thing. When I activated my initial setup, it configured my email software so that my outgoing mail route is correct. I have a feeling that the browser re-routing is merely a preference change–like selecting a default home page.

  3. Let me see if I get this, you are all upset because you can’t spell and your ISP presents a search that tries to correct your mistake…?

    I find it incredible how people see what they want to see.

    Let’s look at the alternative:

    A domain squatter that tries to install trojans and downloaders into your machine. Now thats a great alternative!

  4. Justin I couldn’t agree with you more. Who cares if your ISP is monitoring your traffic and redirecting it to generate more ad revenue?

    Wow that’s a slippery slope! What if the ISP decides that users don’t want to ‘accidently’ view child p*rn from Norway? Redirect it! Make some more cash. Yeehaw! While we’re at it, who visits sites in Norway anyway? Redirect it! Cha-ching! Lot’s of malicious sites in Russia… redirect & cash in. The RIAA is leaning on us why don’t we redirect torrent sites and make another wad of cash? etc…

    Once your ISP starts monitoring and redirecting your traffic, where do they draw the line?

  5. I care. My ISP redirects me to a search engine that doesn’t show advertisments. But, as Nathan said, you have to start all over with a miss-typed URL. Personally, I like to choose where my browser goes and If a website/URL no longer exists then I would rather see an error than too be redirected to some strange, unfamiliar website. I found this information helpful: http://www.swcp.com/~manos/blockads.html
    I have since edited my hosts file to include the address of the offending website wilst using my local numerical address in conjunction with it and, I am no longer redirected. Be sure to read it thoroughly.

  6. This is worse than just a problem for misspellings and typos. We have internal network only domain URLS that are accessible via our VPN. With this Verizon system, when they can’t be found on the public DNS, we are redirected to the search page, instead of to our internal DNS and sites.

  7. I notice that OpenDNS does the SAME THING also that checking “do not search from address bar” does not affect this.

  8. It isn’t a setting of your browser. It is a setting of your Verizon issued router, which lays the cause of problem directly at Verizon’s feet. I don’t have a websearch program on my browser and I certainly don’t need Verizon’s help in searching the web. And I’m not like “Justin” who always, perfectly types every URL perfectly every time, and thinks if you mistype a complex, non-grammatically correct URL means you can’t type. Anyway, here is how you fix it on your router, the way that fixed it for me courtesy of:

    Posts matching your search.
    How to disable Verizon DNS Assistance (websearch.verizon.net)

    If you’re a Verizon FiOS subscriber (or a Verizon DSL subscriber, presumably), you’ve probably noticed that if you try to visit a URL with a bogus domain (e.g., http://www.tgbuiewafna4wifwe.com) your browser will end up at a Verizon-branded, advertisement-riddled, annoying search page at wwwz.websearch.verizon.net: “Sorry, ‘www.tgbuiewafna4wifwe.com’ does not exist or is not available. But here are some completely irrelevant ads that you should click on!” No thanks, Verizon!

    I was really surprised to learn that there is actually an opt-out tutorial on verizon.net here, but unfortunately the directions aren’t completely accurate. The important information is there, but the steps to configure the router are off (at least in my case).

    So, below are the steps I took to get it working on my Actiontec MI424-WR router, firmware version, hardware version A. You can check out your router specs on the ‘System Monitoring | Router Status’ page. I can’t guarantee these steps will work or even make sense on all FiOS configurations, so let that be my disclaimer. If you’re afraid of messing up your router, make a backup of your configuration file under the ‘Advanced | Configuration File’ page.

    1. Log in to your FiOS router.
    2. Click on the ‘System Monitoring’ tab and then ‘Advanced Status’ on the left menu.
    3. Confirm that you are an advanced user by clicking ‘Yes’ and then go to ‘Full Status/System wide Monitoring of Connections’.
    4. Under the ‘Broadband Connection (Coax)’ column, take note of the IP addresses in the ‘DNS Server’ row.
    5. Now click on the ‘Broadband Connection (Coax)’ column header which should bring you to the ‘Broadband Connection (Coax) Properties’ page. Click the ‘Settings’ button.
    6. Towards the bottom of this page, look for the ‘DNS Server’ field. Change the drop down to ‘Use the Following DNS Server Addresses’. The page will now reload with two extra fields: ‘Primary DNS Server’ and ‘Secondary DNS Server’.
    7. Recall the IP addresses from step 4. According to Verizon, the last octet will always be 12. Change the last octet to 14. (The *.14 DNS servers don’t provide DNS Assistance. My DNS servers were and which I changed to and I pinged these addresses to make sure they existed. They did.)
    8. Enter the *.14 addresses respectively in the ‘Primary DNS Server’ and ‘Secondary DNS Server’ fields. Click the ‘Apply’ button.

    After this, wait a minute or so, and then try a google test to make sure you can access the internet.

    If the internet works, try visiting our bogus domain again: http://www.tgbuiewafna4wifwe.com. After a few seconds you should see your browser’s error page. No more Verizon web search b.s.! Hooray! Meaningless geek victory!


    Good luck and I hope it works for you because this fixed it for me.

  9. By the way, the instructions say change the ‘Broadband Connection (Coax)’ DNS setting. However, I changed the ‘Broadband Connection (Ethernet)’ setting on mine.

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