How web content filtering secures your network further
Your router’s basic parental controls are probably the first thing that comes to mind to most people whenever the term ‘web content filtering’ is mentioned. After all, according to online security software vendors, the most common group of users that use web filtering are parents, businesses, and schools.
The most obvious use case for content filtering is keeping inappropriate content away from children and blocking timewasters in office networks. However, its main benefit does not solely revolve around keeping restricted content at bay. One of the lesser-known but arguably equally important reasons why content filtering is gaining more traction in Enterprise WiFi networks is reducing the risk of getting malware infections.
As users become more IT savvy, they need the reassurance that they are connected to a secure network, especially when they are not in their own homes. Of course, establishments can explicitly say that users use their WiFi at their own risk in their Terms and Conditions. While that may potentially save them from legal troubles, it will not shield them from PR nightmares should malware infect the users’ devices while in their network.
How ANTlabs Security Module Works
ANTlabs is launching the new Security Module for its S-series gateways soon to further secure users from sites known to drop malicious payloads and for IT administrators to prevent users from accessing restricted content quickly. The Security Module protects users by giving operators the controls to block by category. It is based on DNS filtering—a type of content filtering using the DNS layer to filter based on IP addresses.
The ANTlabs Security Module allows policies to apply to the entire venue. When users bring in multiple devices, the filtering will work across these devices. It filters websites into six major categories (Security, Adult-related, Bandwidth Hogs, Illegal Activity, Time Wasters, and General Sites) with more than 60 pre-defined subcategories and can inspect encrypted sites. The URLs categorized in the security module’s database are constantly updated, so service providers who subscribe to this feature will have peace of mind knowing they have protection from the latest threats.
If you manage—for example—a school WiFi network, you may want to prevent students from accidentally seeing harmful content such as those from gambling, porn, and hate sites. These new sites keep changing, and new ones pop up every day, so manually blocking them is not feasible. Another scenario where category blocking is useful is when your school or company decides that accessing time-wasting sites like YouTube is not allowed during certain hours. Sites like YouTube are categorized under “Time Wasters > Entertainment”, and by selecting this category, YouTube and similar sites are blocked. There is no need to manually key in the URLs of these sites, thus saving you time and effort.
Other ANTlabs Gateway Features that Enhance Security
Other ANTlabs gateway features that work well with Security Module to secure your network even further are ANTlabs’ built-in Anti-SPAM Protection and Anti-DOS Protection. ANTlabs gateways also have a built-in high-performance DNS server that prevents external DNS poisoning and protects users against ransomware like “Wannacry”. Lawful Intercept, which conforms to various IT Cyber laws, is another ANTlabs gateway feature that helps you secure your guest networks.
ANTlabs will release the Security Module for SG 4 S-Series and ANTlabs Service Platform users soon. Subsequent release for ANTlabs IG 4 S-series will be confirmed later. This new feature opens new possibilities for users to work and play in a more secure network environment. It benefits not only guest WiFi networks such as hospitality, schools, universities, and businesses but also other corporate networks that do not fall under the guest WiFi category. And because this is a cloud-based solution, it requires no hardware purchases and will work seamlessly with your ANTlabs SG 4 S-series gateway.
If you are interested to know more about this upcoming module, talk to us today. We would be glad to answer your questions.