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The Benefits of Web Content Filtering Solutions for MSPs and Their Clients

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The Benefits of Web Content Filtering Solutions for MSPs and Their Clients

Web filtering is the process of restricting or blocking access to specific websites or content on the internet. It is leveraged to protect networks and devices from security threats, prevent employees from accessing inappropriate or irrelevant content while on company time, and help organizations comply with regulatory requirements.

Companies use on-premise or cloud-based web filtering tools based on their unique requirements—the latter is becoming more popular owing to its ease of use. For maximum convenience, many companies are also outsourcing their web filtering needs to MSPs who, in turn, use cloud-based web filtering solutions to deliver top-notch service to their clients.

Let's take a glance at some web filtering modalities before dwelling further on the benefits of cloud-based web content filtering for MPSs and their clients.

On-Premise Web Filters

On-premise web filters are installed on a company's own servers or hardware devices and can be configured and managed in-house. Here are a few common types of on-premise web filters:

Proxy servers

These serve as intermediaries between users and their internet connections, intercepting all web traffic and filtering them according to predefined policies.

Virtual private networks (VPNs)

These allow remote workers to connect securely to a company's network and can be used to enforce web filtering policies for remote users.

Firewalls

These are used to protect a company's network from unauthorized access and filter specific web traffic according to predefined policies.

Host-based filters

Installed on individual computers or devices, they can be used to filter web traffic at the device level.

Gateway filters

Installed on a company's gateway or router, they filter web traffic before it enters the company's network. There are also cloud-based firewalls, VPNs, and proxy servers. However, they can’t be deemed web filters per se, as they are purpose-built and more specific variants of cloud-based web filters.

 

Cloud-Based Web Filters

Cloud-based web filtering directs a company's web traffic through a filtering service.  Various types of cloud filters can be leveraged depending on the requirements and preferences of the organization:

DNS Filter

This uses the website’s domain name as the primary criterion for blocking or allowing access to it.

URL Filter

This blocks access to specific URLs or website addresses rather than blocking entire domains.

IP Filter

This type of filter uses IP addresses as the primary criteria for blocking or allowing access to websites. It blocks access to entire IP addresses or ranges of various addresses, regardless of the domain names associated with them.

Category Filter

This filter restricts entire categories of websites, such as social media, gambling, or streaming video. This type of filter is typically used to limit access to non-work-related websites to ensure productivity in the workplace.

Protocol Filter

This blocks access to specific network protocols, such as peer-to-peer file sharing or instant messaging. This filter prevents the use of network resources in ways that could be detrimental to network performance or security.

File Type Filter

This blocks the download or upload of specific file types, such as executable files, compressed files, or multimedia. It is important to note that it is the norm for companies to leverage hybrid filters that combine the strengths of multiple filtering approaches to ensure network security and integrity. 

WebTitan is the one-stop solution for all things web content filtering. Book a free demo today to see how the solution works.

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The Value Proposition of DNS-Based Web Content Filtering Solutions

DNS filtering is a popular and practical approach to web filtering. It offers many advantages, such as the ability to block access to malicious websites before the user's device can connect to them. This preemptive feature prevents malware infections and data breaches.

Additionally, a cloud-based DNS web filtering solution can be implemented with relatively low overhead, as it doesn't require additional hardware or software to be installed on user devices.  DNS filtering can also be used in conjunction with other approaches—such as IP or content filtering—to unlock additional layers of protection. As a result, many companies and MSPs have adopted DNS filtering as part of their overall web filtering and security strategies.

 

The Increasing Relevance of MSPs as Web Content Filtering Service Providers

Web filtering is a critical function for maintaining a secure and robust network. This is why more and more companies are outsourcing such a vital service to MSPs.

Cloud-based web content filtering via MSPs leads to many advantages:

Enhanced Security

By blocking access to websites that are known to be sources of malware, phishing, or other cyber threats, MSPs can help reduce the risk of security incidents and improve the overall security posture of their clients. Robust web filtering also leads to productivity improvements among the clients’ workforce by virtue of blocking distracting websites.

Value-Added Service

By providing DNS filtering as a service to their clients, MSPs can differentiate themselves from their competitors and provide additional value. This can increase client loyalty and generate additional revenue for the MSP.

Centralized Management

Cloud-based web filtering can be managed centrally, allowing MSPs to control access to websites across all their client’s networks. This simplifies management and reduces the workload for MSPs, and they can provide consistent policies and protections across all their clients.

Adhering to Regulatory Compliance

Web content filtering solutions block access to websites known to be sources of illegal or inappropriate content. MSPs can provide web content filtering as a service that will help their clients comply with relevant local, federal, and even international regulations.

 

Try WebTitan’s Advanced DNS and Web Content Filtering for Your Clients

Purpose-built for managed service providers, the WebTitan Cloud can integrate seamlessly into your existing securities stack. The multi-tenant solution provides real-time advanced content filtering and virus protection. Host it in your environment or let TitanHQ do it in AWS on your behalf.

Book a free demo of WebTitan’s advanced DNS and web content filtering solution to experience firsthand the magic of empowering your clients’ security posture. See its user-friendly UI in real-time and explore the benefits of our competitive pricing model.

WebTitan is the one-stop solution for all things web content filtering. Book a free demo today to see how the solution works.

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