What is Web Filtering
Web filtering is a number of techniques allowing its users to block web pages and entire sites by preventing internet browsers from loading the pages and websites. Each technique is based on a specific internet protocol.
Based on the DNS (Domain Name System) protocol, DNS filtering is one such technique. DNS filtering is the most reliable and comprehensive technique for blocking malware and phishing, explicit and pornographic sites – any content educators and parents find dangerous and would like students to avoid in an educational environment.
What differentiates DNS filtering from other filtering techniques is that it blocks unencrypted/HTTP and encrypted/HTTPS sites equally well. The latter dominates the internet and the popularity of HTTPS sites grows by the day. The SafeDNS web filtering solution for schools is DNS-based and filters HTTPS and HTTP internet traffic just fine.
There are web filters that analyze the content of web pages, looking for certain key words. If on the page the filter finds the key words that users have marked as inappropriate (rude, vulgar, etc.), this page is blocked.
Another way for web filters to determine what content a website has, is to look for such information in the filter’s database of categorized websites. In such a database, sites are distributed into 1 or several content categories. Users of this kind of web filtering solutions choose among the categories which to block or allow. SafeDNS provides this type of web filtering, based on its own exceptionally precise, dynamically updated web categorization database.
With a database of 105M sites in 60 content categories to choose from, SafeDNS users set the filtering rules they find necessary for pupils, students of different age, staff members and school administrators. Sites from unwanted content categories, blocked by the users, will never be accessible on their networks. Per-policy exceptions from filtering rules are of course available for the SafeDNS users.
Why there is a necessity for web filtering at school
To get access to an almost unlimited wealth of online educational resources, teachers and students all over the world connect to the internet many times a day. But keep in mind that web connection is a double edge sward. On the one hand, it can bring inspiration, enlightenment, academic knowledge, and lots of new exciting ideas.
On the other hand, an unfiltered internet is a kind of the Wild West. It is full of bad stuff – porn, child abuse content, malicious and phishing sites. The educators, ignoring this hard truth, do that at their own peril. Leaving the students one on one with an unfiltered internet may cause a range of problems. Let's take a look at what issues the educators can solve with a high quality web filtering.
In some countries schools must comply with the regulation and government-issued recommendations, concerning protection of under-age children against harmful content on the internet.