If you use Firefox, your web browsing habits will become a bit more mysterious to your internet provider. 

Mozilla, the non-profit developer of the Firefox web browser, will make this happen by switching U.S. desktop Firefox users to an encrypted form of the directory assistance behind all internet navigation, as announced in a post last week.

This change involves the Domain Name Service, which lets you get anywhere online by translating your request for a site into the numeric Internet Protocol, or IP, address matching the computer that will deliver the web page in question.

With traditional internet providers, “DNS” sends these queries without the encryption protecting most email and web browsing. So your provider could know the domain names you wanted to visit, as could an eavesdropper online.

As deployed traditionally by internet providers, DNS sends queries without the encryption protecting most email and web browsing. So your provider could know the domain names you wanted to visit, as could an eavesdropper online.

That’s the digital equivalent of calling 411 on speakerphone in public – or, for later generations, asking Siri a personal question in a crowded room.

The fact that you checked Amazon might not shock anybody. But your visits to sites of particular presidential candidates or those of certain health-advocacy organizations could expose much more about you. 

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