What is and why you should be using it

Services for Real Estate Pros with PeterMarkSEO

This week Panera Bread, the national franchise website was hacked. Names, addresses (email and physical), birthdays and credit cards were being leaked onto the internet. In total, it appears more than 7 million online accounts were impacted. Couple week prior, Facebook Cambridge Analytica data misuse scandal affected “substantially” more than 50 million users.

In 2017 Equifax was hit with a cyberattack and 150 million people who's personal information was compromised. Local city Government websites are shutting down left and right, people can't pay bills or request local help. When will this stop? Are we really safe online? How can I protect myself and my website from hackers these days? Well there is some good news on the horizon, but it's going to take some diligence on your part to stay safe.  You will need to do a couple things to stay safe. Scroll down to the bottom for my best tips to protect your browsing and your website safe! 


What is and How Does it Work?

 On April 1, 2018 cloudflare released their new DNS service 1. 1. 1. 1. That's four ones with dots in between.  This is no April Fool's Day joke. You can read all about it on the Cloudflare blog. Cloudflare stated that even though it was a Sunday and it was Easter Passover weekend and it was April Fool's Day there was just no better day to announce DNS service.


What is exactly you ask? is a public DNS server used for translating domain names into internet addresses. But it;s not just any DNS Server. It the fastest and safest. You see computers work with numbers but humans have a hard time remembering numbers, so names work best that's why this DNS was created in the first place. For those of you that don't know, a DNS service is a domain name system. You can think of DNS servers like phone books for the internet. You make a request for something like google.com or facebook.com and that has to correlate to a place called an IP address which is a number. An IP address is a way for computers to communicate with each other over the internet. So that DNS server will respond with what the IP addresses for that domain. What Cloudflare launched specifically was a DNS server. 


Your Internet Service Provider selling your data? Nah..Yes.. What?

What is and why you should be using it


Most ISP's like AT&T, Verizon, Comcast, provide their own DNS servers by default. So whenever you hook up your modem in your router you receive DNS servers from them and you connect to them and all your requests go through that ISP. Over the years Google has has created very popular DNS servers like 8. 8. 8. 8 and, a very popular alternative option. If you have the new Google Wi-Fi, those come pre enabled by default instead of using your ISP's. ISP stands for Internet service providers for those of you that don't know what that is.


Feel better knowing Cloudflare DNS will never sell your data


Now Cloudflare launched their own DNS  server which is 1. 1. 1. 1.  The best part is they won't keep your browsing data and will not ever sell it. You will get a boost in your speed as well, depending on your location. You can go to your web browser and type in and it will load a DNS server page for you with a full explanation about what it is and how to install it. Cloudflare has been in the market of securing the web and helping create a better internet for everybody for years now.  Mostly for business applications and network engineering but recently at the consumer level. I've been using Cloudflare for several years now for clients websites for both https security as well as a Content Delivery Network.  Cloudflare does this via your domain name system. Also Cloudflare's enterprise-class internet application firewall (WAF) protects your Internet property from common vulnerabilities like SQL injection attacks, cross-site scripting, and cross-site forgery requests. Oh, have you checked your website to see if it secure? Does it have a https secure seal? 



Two Main Reasons to Use Cloudflare Now


The main reasons why you might want to change your DNS server away from your current  ISP is 2 fold. One for security and 2nd for speed.  You see when you use any ISP and you make a request online, you use that that digital phone book to look up a website. Your ISP DNS servers respond to that request. All of those requests get logged. Now they got you and they can do anything they want with that data Which means any ISP you are using can take that data and sell it for marketing. They can use it to target you as well. Another worse case scenario is any ISP can throttle your internet depending on the site you're accessing.  So setting up a DNS servers a great first step to getting around those things. If you're wanting Total Protection on the internet and you're wanting to make sure that nobody can see who you are talking to, you need to add additional services. Get a VPN and or use Google Canary browser. Out of all the web browsers I do recommend canary and Microsoft Edge. I have been using Canary this week and I like it a lot. Combine Cloudflare with Canary and a VPN and you have top of the line security available today. Plus you will be super fast too. See comparison below of the top fastest DNS servers. Notice how Google is not even in the top. 

Screenshot below is from DNSPerf.com list of public DNS resolvers which you can check yourself.


Cloudflare benchmark test

1. 1. 1. 1 is now the number one fastest DNS server . As you can see from the chart above Google doesn't even make this list in the top 10. At least in the world location last 30 days. Given that they just launched this yesterday there isn't a heck of a lot of traffic or usage on their system so I'd be curious to see where they stand in about 6 months. But for now they're super fast. Security is another issue with traditional DNS servers DNS standards were built like 35 years ago and it wasn't designed with security or privacy in mind. Cloudflare is trying to push into the future with this new DNS service at lunch and they are supporting both DNS over TLS and DNS over https open standards. Now neither of these Open Standards are widely used yet but we should see more adoption coming in the years to come. One more pretty big advantage to using one Safari one more pretty big advantage to using 1. 1. 1. 1 since that Cloudflare DNS resolver is integrated with cloudflare Services there's no DNS time to live expiration for cloudflare enabled websites. So basically in most cases when you make a change to websites IP address or even the IP address of one node in a load balance group of websites are lodowce group of IP addresses, you have to wait for the DNS time to live to expire and then propagate that change out to all other DNS resolvers around the world. Back in the olden days we used to say that it takes 24 hours for DNS to fully propagate. Now it's usually within an hour or faster but if you are using 1. 1. 1. 1 and you make a change to a cloudflare hosted website that change is instant. So we're talking about millions of websites here and listen to make it pretty significant difference. If you are using to resolve DNS and you're heading to a website that also uses Cloudflare, any changes they make are instantaneously available to your own DNS.




Google DNS Server and/or


Other DNS services like this already exists. The most common being Google's DNS server and level threes server. In comparison to Cloudflare it is slower. Also Cloudflare service is primarily known as a CDN or content delivery Network. Essentially Cloudflare's main business is to geographically distribute websites and other internet application and to provide services such as routing, caching, firewall, load balancing and DDOS mitigation. 15 to 20 years ago you had to pay $20,000 -$30,000 for this hardware. Every couple of years you had to order new load balancers from F5 or netscaler in order to provide the same services. Now I can simply turn on Cloudflare with my hosting account and I get all of those same services. So needless to say Cloudflare does have a lot of DNS experience they've been doing this for years and over the years their services have become cheaper and cheaper. 

Back in 2014 they enabled encryption for all customers and then last year I've been able to DDOS mitigation for everyone. DDOS being distributed denial-of-service. As an alternative to the DNS Services provided to you by your local ISP they created the DNS.



DNS censorship


DNS is an old protocol and like most of the internet in general, it was not designed with your privacy in mind. It's not that it was designed to spy on you, it is used to easily spy on you because it was just not designed with privacy in mind. DNS censorship is definetly a problem. Cloudflare started this project after they started noticing a lot of censorship happening in the world such as in 2014 when the Turkish government blocked Twitter after recordings showing the government corruption scandal leaked online. spray painted in Turkey on buildingsIn 2014 Turkey blocked DNS in their country and people would spray paint on many buildings, which is Google's DNS provider, which you could get access to sites like Twitter. Even today Turkey has blocked Cloudflare's DNS. Any country that support censorship, they are going to block these servers. Cloudflare does support DNS Sac. Cloudflare also has a very robust network with over 149 data centers. Pretty much all over the place with many big portal sites already using their CDN ( content delivery netowork ). The great part here is Cloudflare is working on DNS over https.



Why should I use Cloudflare for my business website?


As mentioned before, for two main reasons, security and speed. The cluprit is usually not https websites and wordpress plugins. 

Just recently I did a site audit for a client and I stumbled upon a Real Estate competitor website which got hacked. The owner had no idea. The site was being used to promote various diet pills and scams. 

The website was not ranking organically for keywords related to Real Estate. Long story short the site did not have a https fully enabled security certificate. I run into this daily. If you do not have https, I highly recommend Cloudflare for the https installation and now for their CDN. If you have a site and need help securing it let me know.


More Benchamark tests



Cloudflare benchmark test vs Google



Cloudflare comes out on top for speed. So they aren't lying about the speed here. They're an average of .01 millisecond for a cache name .045 and .025 on lookups. Really impressive. Now this is going to be subjective as I mentioned before from where you're at. The difference in speed you're going to see based on different areas, that's going to happen. Just so you know there using point to presence. So point to presence means 1.1.1 isn't a geographically pinned IP address so it's not like that servers located in one place. That server, because of their content delivery network is so big they're able to give points of presence wherever is geographically close. Cloudflare has all those data centers listed on there if you want to find out where the closest server to you is. You're actually able to use this DNS resolver not just locally for good speed but if you're in California, if you're in Europe if you're in Germany if you're any where that this isn't blocked, they have a point of presence closer to you than one single server. So it doesn't have to traverse as much. This is the same server methodology used by other companies as well


You're going to get some speed variation from time to time depending on your location. Many people ask about filtering. So far no websites have been found where Cloudflare DNS did not resolve.

If you ever did find a website which was not resolving, it's easy enough to go look up with a resolver against other DNS. I haven't had any that failed to resolve. I don't have the best testing methodologies besides benchamark test I used here. This at least gives you an idea. Cloudflare claims to keep logs very brief. In fact less than 24 hours. This doesn't foolproof 100% your security online or invisibility on the internet but it is still going to be way way better than using your ISP's internet. So that extra layer of protection there is a great thing. Also Cloudflare is working on the whole DNS over HTTPS. I know there's some availability with some plug-ins for that right now. That's great becasue it would hide some of your DNS. Be sure to use the web browsers recommended here in this article.



How can you try out ?


Here is a video


If you are using Windows 10

Step 1. Click on the Start menu, then click on Control Panel.
Step 2. Click on Network and Internet.
Step 3. Click on Change Adapter Settings.
Step 4. Right click on the Wi-Fi network you are connected to, then click Properties.
Step 5. Select Internet Protocol Version 4 (or Version 6 if desired).
Step 6. Click Properties.
step 7. Write down any existing DNS server entries for future reference.
Step 8. Click Use The Following DNS Server Addresses.
Step 9. Replace those addresses with the DNS addresses:
For IPv4: and

Step 10 Click OK, then Close
Step 11. Restart your browser and enjoy!

There are many operating systems out there so be sure to pick the one for your install.

If you want to speed up your internet, get ddos protection, have a safe web browsing experience, and believe net neutrality, Cloudflare is the place to be. Thanks for reading about what is and please comment below.





Comments (30)

John Pusa
Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Crest - Glendale, CA
Your All Time Realtor With Exceptional Service

Hello Peter Mark this is interesting that will function better. Good to know.

Apr 15, 2018 03:58 PM
Robin Wells
WellSwept Chimneys - Victoria Harbour, ON
Giving Peace Of Mind One Chimney At A Time

Good info, thanks.  Already use the CloudFlare CDN service - also it provides a lot of protection for website beyond the content delivery and is also a great way to deliver HTTPS content easily.

Apr 15, 2018 06:15 PM
Kathy Streib
Cypress, TX
Home Stager/Redesign

Hi Peter- I'm going to have to return and reread this because much of it when flying over my head!  That said, I thank you for this very thorough post.

Apr 15, 2018 06:44 PM
Kathleen Daniels, Probate & Trust Specialist
KD Realty - 408.972.1822 - San Jose, CA
Probate Real Estate

Peter Mark - perhaps I did not give myself enought credit.  I followed the instructions step by step and I believe it is set up now.  v6 indicated the ip was not valid.  I switched to v4 and it appears it is now set up.  I say appears, because I did not get an applause at the end that said ... you did it correctly 

Apr 15, 2018 06:45 PM
Jim Cheney
Saint Francis Property Santa Rosa, CA - Santa Rosa, CA
Rincon Valley Realtor 707.494.1055

Interesting, and complicated. I think the topic of cyber security is very important.

Apr 15, 2018 10:03 PM
Sally K. & David L. Hanson
EXP Realty 414-525-0563 - Brookfield, WI
WI Real Estate Agents - Luxury - Divorce

Lots of retailers in the news have made us all a bit insecure...great info.

Apr 16, 2018 04:10 AM
Bruce Hicks
Best Homes Hawaii - Honolulu, HI
Your Best Hawaii Realtor!

Thank you much for sharing this Peter Mark wow, over my head!

Apr 16, 2018 06:49 AM
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Broker
Elizabeth Anne Weintraub, Broker - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

I have Cloudfare but never knew what it was. Thanks for the explanation. I recently added Privacy blockers to Chrome and Firefox. Apparently Safari has one built in. But I cannot use my VPN on some sites because they won't work properly. But I always use it on my phone.

Apr 16, 2018 09:02 AM
Carol Williams
Although I'm retired, I love sharing my knowledge and learning from other real estate industry professionals. - Wenatchee, WA
Retired Agent / Broker / Property Manager

Hi Peter,
This is over my head but I know where to go for answers... YOU! 

Apr 16, 2018 03:28 PM
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California, Inc. - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Thanks for the information. I need to spend more time on this as some of it's over my head. I may be talking with my computer guy...my son in law who is in the IT security side of things.


Apr 16, 2018 08:25 PM
Jerry Lucas
ABC Legal Docs LLC - Colorado Springs, CO
Notary Training, Consulting. Colorado Springs, CO

Thanks for the good information, but it may be too technical for many readers. I am a techie, a retired computer design engineer. I designed my own WordPress website.

I haven't read about these Cloudflare servers before and don't need CDN for my local market or Colorado website visitors. I use small-sized compressed images, WP SuperCache and PHP 7.1 for fast speed on my WordPress website.

In your article, you show an image of the DNS Benchmark Software from Steve Gibson at Gibson Research Corp. On his website, readers can download this free DNS speed testing utility DNS Benchmark tool

It runs DNS speed tests on the most popular DNS sites and also tests the user's current DNS settings and ranks all the results by speed for comparison. At my office in Colorado Springs, the cached Google servers are faster than the Cloudflare servers.

I have been using Norton Connect Safe DNS that blocks malware sites when I am web browsing doing research. I don't use the DNS from my ISP or Google because they log my web activity.

I will take a closer look at Cloudflare DNS. Since most users will select as their primary DNS and as their secondary DNS, may end up busier and slower because it has more user activity. It may be faster to choose as the primary DNS and as secondary.

I value cyber security over speed and like the extra protection of Norton Connect Safe. But if Cloudflare has strong security from malware and cyber attacks and fast speed, that is a winner.

Apr 16, 2018 08:59 PM
Dana Basiliere
Rossi & Riina Real Estate - Williston, VT
Making deals "Happen"

That is a lot to digest. I didn't see a price for the cloudfare service. Is it a free browser?

Apr 17, 2018 03:16 AM
Gary L. Waters Broker Associate, Bucci Realty
Bucci Realty, Inc. - Melbourne, FL
Eighteen Years Experience in Brevard County

Read this twice.  Will try it again.  Its either over my head or over my attitude.  Thank!

Apr 17, 2018 06:23 AM
M.C. Dwyer
Melody Russell Team at eXp Realty of California, Inc. - Felton, CA
MC Dwyer-Santa Cruz Mountains Property Specialist

Well, I tried. I think your post probably offers valuable information - if only I could understand it. Maybe consider breaking it down, given most of us aren’t working in high tech?

Apr 17, 2018 07:40 AM
Corey Martin
Martin Presence Group - Ruston, LA
Real Estate and Management Solutions

Interesting. I'm sure they will continue being the fastest DNS for now, but I don't know if that will continue or not. They have to have the server capacity to keep it up. We will just have to see if they can keep up with the traffic. It sounds like they have a great product, though. Thank you for sharing!

Apr 17, 2018 04:32 PM
John Wiley
Fort Myers, FL
Lee County, FL, ECO Broker, GRI, SRES,GREEN,PSA

This is new information that has been presented at a time of heightened awareness of our need for Internet security.

I will have to spend some time digesting this post.

Thanks for a great share.

Apr 18, 2018 06:30 AM
Richard Bazinet /MBA, CRS, ABR
West USA Realty - Scottsdale, AZ
Phoenix Scottsdale. Sellers, Buyers & Relocations

Thank you very much for posting, this is very interesting despite being technical, especially in this day in age of cybersecurity. I'll review...

Apr 18, 2018 07:45 AM
Jane Peters
Home Jane Realty - Los Angeles, CA
Los Angeles real estate concierge services

I know I was on cloudflare for a while but it seemed to conflict with things on my site. But it is a great service.

May 05, 2018 04:00 PM
Eileen Burns
Trans State Commercial RE Ft. Lauderdale/Miami/Palm Beach - Fort Lauderdale, FL
FLorida Real Estate Connector

WOW so much to stay on top of in this fast moving society... thanks Peter Mark Well worth a reblog

Jul 22, 2018 05:21 AM
Anna Banana Kruchten CRS, Phoenix Broker
HomeSmart Real Estate BR030809000 - Phoenix, AZ

Wow I'm glad Eileen Burns reblogged this - incredible post Peter. Thank you!

Jul 22, 2018 03:17 PM