Cloud URL filtering represents one of the easiest and most versatile ways to optimize protection against online threats and control user access to the web. It can be used to prevent malware downloads, phishing attacks and viruses, to enhance productivity in the workplace, and to eliminate employees, children, guests or customers being exposed to inappropriate online content.
Because it is cloud-based, cloud URL filtering has no upfront costs or high maintenance overheads. Implementation and configuration takes a matter of minutes, after which system administrators can apply acceptable use policies by individual user, user-group or organization-wide. Policies can also be applied by time, bandwidth or category depending on the needs of the organization.
How Cloud URL Filtering Works
Cloud URL filtering uses a three-tier mechanism to prevent users visiting websites known to harbor malware and to allow system administrators block access to websites considered a) a high risk factor, or b) inappropriate in the workplace or other area of public Internet access.
Other than the blacklists provided to prevent malware, phishing and viruses, administrators can choose which categories of website access to block, who they are blocked to, and when. Their choices are easy to apply to the user policies via a central management portal.
Then, when a user connected to the network types a URL or clicks on a link to visit a website, the cloud URL filtering mechanisms check the request against the blacklists and user policies. If a match is found, the request to visit the website is denied – the exception being when a website has been whitelisted.
Whitelisting is a process that allows system administrators to add specific web pages to an “always allowed” list. When the filter recognizes the URL, it does not check it against blacklists or user policies, nor inspects its content. This accelerates the delivery of the requested web page to the user.
This high degree of versatility ensures business-critical online activities are not obstructed by over-zealous settings. It makes it easier to apply the settings in the first place, and then adjust them, without leaving gateways for malware or allowing users to access inappropriate online content.
The Advantages of Cloud URL Filtering
In addition to being quick to deploy and easy to manage, cloud URL filtering has no upfront costs. This eliminates concerns about investing in hardware, and more hardware when the number of users increases. It also eliminates concerns about having to perform software updates on every device.
Updates for the malicious URL, phishing protection and antivirus software on URL filters are performed automatically. The real-time categorization of more than 500 million websites – including the Alexa one million most-visited websites – is also performed automatically as new websites are published.
Filtering URLs from the cloud mean that the service is universally compatible with every network and every operating system. Implementation requires a straightforward redirection of the network´s DNS server settings and the service expands dynamically as new users are added.
No matter how much networks expand, or if multiple networks are added to the service, cloud URL filtering provides an Internet content filtering service with imperceptible latency. Users will never know their Internet access is being filtered until they try to visit an unsafe or inappropriate website.
WebTitan Cloud from SpamTitan
SpamTitan´s solution for cloud URL filtering is WebTitan Cloud. Our enterprise grade solution for optimizing protection against online threats and controlling user access to the web has been specifically designed with ease of use in mind, and can be ready to use within minutes.
Suitable for both wired and wireless networks, WebTitan Cloud can improve the online security posture of your organization, enhance productivity and help create a more pleasant environment for those who use your premises to work, rest or play.
WebTitan Cloud Features
- Versatile, compatible, and scalable – regardless of existing hardware or software.
- No hardware to purchase, software to download, or complicated settings to apply.
- Protects wired and wireless networks from online threats with imperceptible latency.
- Blocks access to anonymizer sites to prevent circumnavigation of the filter settings.
- No bandwidth restrictions or limit on the number of users/devices that can be protected.
- User and time-based filtering options, with cloud keys provided for sanctioned overrides.
- Automated reporting helps control user access and enforce acceptable use policies.
- Multi-lingual filtering, with the option for administrators to create their own categories.
Speak with SpamTitan today about cloud URL filtering, and we will invite you to take advantage of a free trial of WebTitan Cloud. Our free trial gives you the opportunity to experience the benefits of our cloud URL filtering solution in your own environment to see how easy it is to protect your network and control user access to the web.