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Mediacom Using DPI To Hijack Searches, 404 Errors 379

Verteiron writes "Cable company Mediacom recently began using deep packet inspection to redirect 404 errors, Google and Bing searches to their own, ad-laden 'search engine.' Despite repeated complaints from customers, Mediacom continues this connection hijacking even after the user has opted out of the process. Months after the problem was first reported, the company seems unwilling or unable to fix it and has even experimented with injecting their own advertising into sites like Google. How does one get a company infamous for its shoddy customer service and comfortable, state-wide cable monopolies to act on an issue like this?"
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Mediacom Using DPI To Hijack Searches, 404 Errors

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  • Re:HTTPS (Score:3, Interesting)

    by erroneus ( 253617 ) on Wednesday April 27, 2011 @10:28AM (#35952582) Homepage

    No, he's essentially correct.

    Those days are essentially behind us, generally speaking, but you can't tell me that you never met someone who proudly stated "I'm computer illiterate" before? The primary draw of Mac OS was "it's so easy!" And it was! It also meant it would take a back seat to most of the newest and cutting-edge stuff, but the "easy" crowd didn't care about cutting-edge anyway... sounded dangerous after all.

    Like it or not, "easy" was a primary marketing point for Apple. And seriously, even today, what about Apple stuff is hard, difficult or complicated? You can still "uninstall" a program by removing its icon! (Not true in the case of Microsoft Office, but that's Microsoft ain't it?) Sure you can get "into the tech" with Mac OS X if you want to now, but still.

    I'm guessing you are an Apple user and you somehow took that personally. Aren't you an exception to the rule though? After spending time supporting Mac in a business environment, I can safely say that Apple users are less technically sophisticated than PC users. I didn't say "dumber" just less technically sophisticated. To insert the old car analogy, Apple users drive "automatics" while Windows users drive "standards." The result of the difference is that Windows users end up with knowledge like what a swap file is used for or that a DLL is conflicting after a recent installation of software. PC users learn more because they experience more problems.

    Now, are you STILL offended?

  • Re:HTTPS (Score:2, Interesting)

    by erroneus ( 253617 ) on Wednesday April 27, 2011 @11:27AM (#35953366) Homepage

    We are talking about marketing and demographics, not about technical merit and features. The marketing and demographic of Apple are those who want to use their computers without necessarily knowing how they work at a deep level. But it doesn't sound like you have been an Apple user for all that long. I've dealt with Mac since it was black and white and with all the improvements since that time. I know the people who were attracted to it and the people who wanted it but couldn't afford it. (The reputation that Apple was too expensive has a strong historical basis in fact!)

    I've seen a lot of coming and going in the desktop PC world. Ever code for a 64KB limited machine? I have. Motorola makes awesome processors with logical and consistent instruction sets. Intel didn't... probably still doesn't. Let's just say I see a very big picture and while I am "pro-Linux" and anti-Microsoft and anti-Apple, it is largely because of technical and idealogical merits. But I am prepared to change my opinion of either company when they change their behavior. It's as simple as that.

    So, being offended means you draw some sense of identity with your product preferences. I guess that's par for the course -- I have even seen auto mechanics get a bit "weird" about brands of tools they use. (Don't tell anyone I use the Home Depot or Lowe's store branded tools! Someone will laugh at me!!!)

  • by b4dc0d3r ( 1268512 ) on Wednesday April 27, 2011 @12:13PM (#35954026)

    I got Bellsouth DSL, because cable was not laid on my side of the street. I got the modem and an installation disk. I called and said I was not running an installation disk, please tell me what I need to do special for your connection, if anything.

    They said they understood, and I can do it at this web address. The website was basically blank. Are you using internet explorer? No of course I'm not. Well the site only runs in IE. I should have been suspicious, but figured they are idiots.

    ActiveX did exactly what the install disk would have done as soon as I opened the page in IE. I'm still finding bits of things. Motive*, MCCI*, att-nap. Of course, bellsouth was bought by ATT, and I was not pleased about finding that out either.

  • by Vegemeister ( 1259976 ) on Wednesday April 27, 2011 @12:14PM (#35954046)
    Does wget still return the proper exit code?
  • Re:HTTPS (Score:4, Interesting)

    by ComputerGeek01 ( 1182793 ) on Wednesday April 27, 2011 @01:09PM (#35954768)

    I've seen this term thrown around this thread a lot: MITM. This stands for Man In The Middle, a MITM attack is when an entity, a person or group of people, takes your connection to what ever host and forwards it through their machine. As the service provider MediaCom IS ALREADY THE MAN IN THE MIDDLE. Wikipedia doesn't have an informative article on them but they appear to be a Tier 1 provider so you require their infrastructure to use the internet, that means their systems, their cables and most importantly their DNS tables.

    They see your IP connecting to some website, they also see the traffic to and from your machine. They don't need to break any kind of code and read every packet they only need to filter out the legit packets and insert their own. You and a hundred other posts on this thread are over thinking this.

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