Prep School Eliminates Unauthorized HTTPS Requests with Cymphonix
- By Dian Schaffhauser
Trinity Preparatory School in Winter Park, FL has integrated the Cymphonix Network Composer DC30X as its sole content filtering solution and is now able to prioritize its bandwidth and prevent students from bypassing its firewall using HTTPS protocols.
Prior to purchasing the Cymphonix device, network administrators for the school recognized two serious issues within their Cisco firewall infrastructure. First, they were struggling with the misuse of bandwidth resources caused by students who were accessing Web-based materials such as Facebook and streaming media sites that monopolized the school's overall bandwidth availability.
Second, their Cisco firewall didn't provide the ability to prioritize Web sites and content. "We were unable to prioritize the individual needs of our faculty and students without essentially eliminating the student's ability to access the Web," said Denise Musselwhite, director of technology. "We got to a point where we had to completely block Facebook, Myspace, YouTube and all other streaming media for the entire network, which is not conducive in the academic environment...especially when there is so much content-rich information readily available through sites like these."
After installation, Network Composer revealed that students were streaming media even more than administrators had originally expected. "Being able to run a number of reports in real-time and have full visibility of our network is invaluable," said Musselwhite.
The Cymphonix appliance plugs into the network and scans, identifies, and controls Internet packets. The product allows the administrator to set up policies to control bandwidth allocations for certain types of Web activities.
Network Composer is in use at Hillside Public Schools in New Jersey and Galesburg Community School District #205 in Illinois.
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About the author: Dian Schaffhauser is a writer who covers technology and business for a number of publications. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @schaffhauser.