This tutorial describes how to close an Open DNS server. An Open DNS server allows anyone to use that server as a DNS lookup server. This is a potential threat and such access must either be blocked, or restricted to a few trusted IPs. This is how it is done.

1. Make a list of IPs you consider as trusted (i.e., only those IPs which can use this DNS server for DNS lookups). The list should include all IPs on the server. Now if you don’t know what I am talking about, ssh to your server, and type in the below command as root:

ifconfig | grep 'inet addr' | cut -f2 -d: | cut -f1 -d' ' | sort | uniq

2. Open /etc/named.conf in an editor. I would recommend that you take a backup of the file first before this.

cp -p /etc/named.conf /etc/named.conf.bak
vi /etc/named.conf

3. Locate this line:

key "rndckey" {

Move your cursor below this block of code, and press ‘i’ (to change into vi’s insert mode) and then type in the following:

acl "trusted" {
IP1; IP2; IP3; IP4; externalIP1 ;

Modify the line IP1; IP2; IP3; IP4; externalIP1 ; to include server’s IP addresses and any external IPs which you wish to allow recursive queries.

4. Once the acl “trusted” is added, move down the file and locate the block named options. Inside it add the below lines:

allow-recursion { trusted; };
allow-notify { trusted; };
allow-transfer { trusted; };

This is how the options block might look like once the changes are made:

options {
directory "/var/named";
allow-recursion { trusted; };
allow-notify { trusted; };
allow-transfer { trusted; };

dump-file "/var/named/data/cache_dump.db";
statistics-file "/var/named/data/named_stats.txt";
* If there is a firewall between you and nameservers you want
* to talk to, you might need to uncomment the query-source
* directive below. Previous versions of BIND always asked
* questions using port 53, but BIND 8.1 uses an unprivileged
* port by default.
// query-source address * port 53;

5. Save the changes (use ‘esc’ + ‘:wq’ in vi editor) and then restart named

/etc/init.d/named stop
/etc/init.d/named start