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Web Filtering

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Web Filtering

What is Web Filtering?

A Web filter is a piece of software designed to restrict the websites a user can visit on his or her computer. Web filters are used to prevent malware entering an organization, filters can be set to block access to sites that commonly host malware, such as those related to pornography or gambling.

Web Filtering Software

Web Filtering software is an important protection against a range of web threats. Web filtering software prevents end users from visiting websites that contain these malicious threats.

Web filtering software is one of the most effective ways to neutralize phishing attacks. Phishing is a form of fraud where an attacker impersonates a trustworthy entity or person in email or other forms of communication. Cybercriminal often use phishing emails to distribute malicious links and infected attachments. The purpose is to extract login credentials or account information from victims. These attacks  target hundreds of millions of organisations every day.

Web filtering software prevents end users from visiting websites known to contain malware or exploit kits and blocks botnet activity and communications with hackers’ C&C servers. The software can be configured to also block malicious third party adverts on websites (malvertising).

 

How does Web Filtering Work

Web filtering works by using either a hardware or software-based solutions to establish filtering rules around what categories of website can be visited by the user. Content is grouped into categories—for example finance, news, sports, gambling, adult,  the websites in categories deemed dangerous or unnecessary are blocked on the network.

The WebTitan URL classification system is based on  users actively visiting URLs, as opposed to  classifying bot traffic. The classification uses a crowd-sourced approach for obtaining a constant stream of URLs to analyze. The continuous stream of URLs actively being visited by 500 million  end users is the primary in-house source for threat corpuses and comes from a global network of customers. This approach allows us to continuously enhance, optimize and tune malicious detection capabilities in an ever-changing threat landscape.

A network that isn’t well-protected can be infected with malicious spyware and hackers can easily to obtain sensitive information that within seconds can be passed on to individuals that can use it for financial gain. Security incidents like this can be hugely detrimental to businesses and highlight that web filtering and cyber security  is absolutely essential.

Ensuring children are not exposed to inappropriate content is an obvious use case for web filtering. DNS filtering, a specific type of web filtering uses the DNS layer to filter based on IP addresses. DNS web filtering is becoming increasingly popular as a means of managing internet usage. With DNS filtering a potentially dangerous site can be blocked before they have a chance to drop malicious payloads.

 

Enterprise Web Filtering Service

An enterprise web filtering service works to protect an organizations network from web-borne threats by blocking access to dangerous websites and file types likely to be infected with malicious software or “malware”. Enterprise web filtering solutions can also enhance workplace productivity, prevent potential HR concerns, address bandwidth issues and improve the service an organization delivers to its customers.

Other articles and links related to Enterprise Web Filtering Services

https://www.titanhq.com/security-articles/enterprise-web-filtering-software/

An enterprise web filtering service analyzing every request to visit a website. The request is then compared against blacklists and filtering settings.  Access to the website is denied if the website is considered to be unsafe or violates filtering policies. In order to provide the maximum level of protection, the best enterprise web filtering services also provide SSL inspection – a feature in which the content of an encrypted https:// website is decrypted and compared against an organization´s filter settings.

Enterprise web filtering services are an essential element of an organizations cybersecurity defenses. An enterprise web filtering solution can prevent users from visiting websites likely to contain threats and prevent files being downloading that typically contain malware. Enterprise web filtering solutions therefore mitigate the risk from phishing attacks and drive-by downloads.

 

Enhance Productivity via Web Filtering

Some personal use of the Internet at work is considered to have a positive impact on workplace productivity, however excessive non work-related social media use has been calculated to cost businesses billions of dollars each year.

Enterprise web filtering includes mechanisms that allow bespoke filtering configurations to limit access to social media accounts, online shopping portals, gambling sites and other non-work related activities. Administrators use web filtering solutions to blacklist content that is considered inappropriate for their users such as porn, violence, and profanity. Web filters prevent underaged users from accessing adult content while also preventing potential HR concerns and allegations that an employer is complicit in creating a hostile working environment.

Enterprise web filtering services automatically generate reports that administrators can use to monitor compliance with acceptable use policies and ensure that employees are not attempting to bypass filtering rules. In order to prevent employees bypassing filtering settings, it is recommended to implement an enterprise level web filtering solution that can block anonymizer services.

 

How Web Filtering Eliminates Bandwidth Issues

A further benefit of web filtering services is that they can be used to eliminate bandwidth issues. Few organizations have unlimited bandwidth, bandwidth abuse causes severe latency and network crashes. Organizations experiencing bandwidth issues can pay for more bandwidth or reduce their bandwidth usage.

One way of reducing bandwidth use is to restrict access to websites such as Netflix and YouTube using an enterprise web filtering service. By restricting access to bandwidth-heavy applications organizations can ensure adequate bandwidth is available to employees.

The Importance of Web Filtering Software for Schools

Web filtering for K12 schools is a requirement of the Children´s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) for publicly-funded schools and libraries if they wish to benefit from E-rate discounts on their Internet access. It is also a legal requirement for all schools in twenty-four US states where similar legislation has been enacted.

Filtering the Internet for K12 school children is not difficult. Organizations can take advantage of cloud-hosted filtering services that are easy to configure and manage, and “cloud keys” now exist that can quickly override parameter settings when adults request unfiltered access to the Internet.

WebTitan Cloud is an effective web filtering solution that protects networks from web-borne threats. It fully complies with CIPA and state legislation for filtering the Internet for K12 school children and has mechanisms in place to prevent children from by-passing  filtering controls. With WebTitan all devices, including Chromebooks can be locked down to avoid circumvention. With Chromebooks web filtering in place, schools can comply with federal and state laws, and empower students to explore the internet safely. 

Cloud Based Web Filtering

If cost is a major concern, consider using cloud-based website content filtering software. Cloud based web filtering solutions require no software downloads or additional hardware purchases. Cloud-based web filtering solutions  tends to be more cost-effective to implement for small to medium sized business, and is the best choice for MSPs looking to add web filtering services to their product portfolios due to the ease of implementation and the low maintenance overhead.

The WebTitan Cloud based Web Filtering Service improves security by blocking access to malicious and risky websites. It has been purpose built to offer robust control and protection to users, while being extraordinarily easy to set up and manage. The solution is designed to integrate easily into the existing infrastructure and deployment is very straightforward. It allows the administrator to set up the solution and forget about it, as it protects your users from malicious websites, and inappropriate sites. WebTitan web filtering prevents malware downloads from malicious or hacked websites and keeps your defense up to date with targeted threat analysis and zero day updates to protect your customers as threats arise.

WebTitan Cloud provides feature rich functionality allowing you protect users from malware, phishing and viruses as well as enforce internet usage policies, without the need for on-premises hardware or software. WebTitan Cloud web filtering offers you cloud based DNS Filtering to bring powerful enterprise filtering to all your users, regardless of their location. Web Titan Cloud eliminates browser latency while delivering secure and comprehensive web filtering to all your off-premises users. 

 

Speak with TitanHQ about our Enterprise Grade Web Filtering Solution WebTitan

WebTitan Cloud is a DNS-based enterprise web filtering solution that’s easy to implement, quick to configure and simple to manage. Speak with us today about our enterprise grade web filtering solution. We’d love to show you the solution in action and invite you to try our enterprise web filtering service.

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