Encrypted DNS is a must, and easy to set up! Android 9 even has the option built-in! And as a bonus, ad blocking!

Android 9 and later (built-in)

Android Pie only supports DNS over TLS. To enable this on your device:

  1. Go to Settings β†’ Network & internet (or Connections) β†’ Advanced (or More connection settings) β†’ Private DNS.
  2. Select the Private DNS provider hostname option.
  3. Enter one of the desired DoT provider addresses and hit Save.

If you chose AdGuard, you’ll automatically also be blocking ads!

Android and iOS (app)

Sadly iOS has not yet adopted secure DNS, and some of you are probably using devices with outdated Android. But there are ways!

There are apps, which create a local VPN, to be able to redirect your DNS requests using either DoT, DoH and some even use the IMO outdated DNSCrypt.

  • Cloudflare provides an app for iOS and Android, but this also means you’d be using Cloudflare for DNS, and they do not block ads. But the app is free. However, you never know what data they might be collecting. ;)
  • AdGuard provides an app for iOS and Android where you can choose different DNS servers, including encrypted ones with DNSCrypt. You can also use adblock filter lists of your liking to customise blocking. Note that Google Play Store blocked ad blockers (ha…) which means on Android, you’ll have to download the APK from the AdGuard website.

Just ad blocking

Android

If you just want to block ads, without the secure DNS bit, you can use the before-mentioned AdGuard or the excellent AdAway on rooted Android, and Blokada on non-rooted Android. Both apps can be found for free on F-Droid.

Again, not available through the Google Play Store because Google blocks ad blockers.

iOS

Apple has a built-in blocking for Safari, and you can find many ad blockers directly in the App Store! Good one, Apple!

Links

Check out my guide for Mozilla Firefox on Desktop!

Author’s Notes

I realize that teaching my readers on how to block ads, means shooting myself in the foot if I want to make ad revenue. But you all have a right to privacy and to choose whether you want to see ads or not. That is also why, on my website, I do not show ads without prior consent.