The Benefits of a Dedicated Web Filter and a UTM

What is a Dedicated Web Filter?

Web filtering is any technology product or service that manages a user’s access to internet content. Restrictions are based on policies you define, which can include a combination of categories you select (for example Profanity and Extreme) specific websites you list (for example, cnn.com) and time-based restrictions (no use of social media sites during class time). 

Web filtering is considered “dedicated” when it is implemented separately from a single UTM product or service. 

What is a UTM? 

UTM (unified threat management) is security-focused hardware or software that contains multiple security functions (such as email filteringdeep packet inspection (DPI), and internet filtering). This contrasts with traditional security methods that use multiple security solutions to perform multiple functions 

What are the Benefits of Having Both a UTM and a Dedicated Web Filter?   

Customize Your Policies and Management – with a dedicated filtering solution like Netsweeper you have comprehensive filtering policy control that may not be found in a UTM product that is trying to be a “jack of all trades”.  Per-user filtering with directory service integration, time-based policies, and the ability to delegate policy management to various stakeholders, are all important features of a web filtering solution that may not be included in a UTM solution. 

Advance Your URL Filtering – Netsweeper has been doing real-time URL categorization for over 20 years in large networks and is known as an industry leader in real-time content categorizationThe category name service (Netsweeper’s global content categorization network) includes over 90 categories in 50+ languages and continues to categorize millions of new websites daily. 

Add Another Layer of Security – web filters like Netsweeper block malware, phishing, and viruses. They also can selectively decrypt SSL based on the policies you select. You can decide to not decrypt the category of Finance, for example, to protect the users banking information. This is also useful for finding malware hiding in SSL. This works in both edge computing (when you generate, collect, and analyze data on the edge of the network where the data is generated rather than in centralized servers and systems) and traditional computing scenarios. 

Low Total Cost of Ownership – UTM solutions can be costly, and often scale by “adding more boxes”.  Netsweeper is a software solution that can be deployed on physical or virtual platforms that are specifically tailored for the need of your network.  Existing underutilized infrastructure can be re-purposed for web filtering, and as your network grows, Netsweeper can be scaled incrementallyreducing the sticker shock that can come with scaling less flexible solutions. 

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