Web content filtering is basically the process of blocking access to web content that might be deemed inappropriate, offensive, or detrimental. Most families will be quite aware of this need to implement web content filtering on their computer systems, however web content filtering does have its own place in the business sector, as well.
The fact is that a company can provide its customers and clients with web content filtering at no additional cost. Of course, it is entirely possible to learn how to install these filters for free, but why trust that your customers or clients will not be able to find out what content your web filtering system allows them to see?
One method of allowing your clients and customers to access web content filtering with no costs to you involves using web content filtering device groups. Each such device group is configured with a number of pre-determined web blocking categories.
Important Features Of Web Content Filters
A web filtering device group could allow access to only adult web content or it could allow all traffic (no matter the source) to bypass standard Internet security controls. There are even some types of web content filtering devices which are configurable between different language operating systems.
This means that if your system supports different languages, you can select your preferred languages to be blocked by the web filtering device.
Another way of allowing your customers and clients greater access to the web is by allowing them to use their favorite browsers within the web content filtering system. The way this works is that the filtering device will first try to establish an IP address from the DNS server and then use that address as a unique filter.
Whenever a DNS request comes in, the request is then sent on to a URL that can be viewed by the web filter device. If the request is considered to be in the wrong category, the web filter device will return a “fatal error”. In other words, if you try to access a web site that is blocked, you might just get a “fatal error” in return.
One of the many ways you can set the filters to block web content filtering device groups is to create multiple user settings for each web site category. You can also create separate category configurations for individual web sites.
For instance, you might create a separate “contact” category for Yahoo! e-mail addresses and separate “ews” category for blog entries and newsgroup discussions.
Of course, not all of your clients and customers will necessarily be computer savvy enough to know how to switch their browsers or access control programs to access certain websites.
That’s why there are also web content categories for highly-targeted access control, such as banking, medical, legal, online shopping, sports and news.
For example, there are banking web content categories for highly targeted access to the banking options and websites, while sports web content categories are more generic. You can also set the web content categories for highly-targeted filtering of particular search terms, which could help you filter out sites with content that is offensive and/or unacceptable.
Web content categories which allow search and content analysis are also very useful when it comes to web content filtering and security control.
For example, if you want to block access to gambling web sites, then the web content filtering and security control software could be programmed to block access to any gambling web sites containing gambling content, including the links to gambling web sites on other websites which are allowed by the web content filtering and security control software.
Similarly, if you want to block access to adult web sites, then the same categorization scheme would also work for adult-friendly web sites.
Some filtering programs also allow you to specify multiple criteria in order to block specific categories. For instance, you might only want to block video presentations. Then, the relevant category(s) in your web content filtering and security control program could be made available for this.
You could also create a blocking list for all government websites. But if you only want to block certain government web sites, you can restrict all government web sites from loading in the relevant category(s) in your web content filtering and security control program.
Another important feature of web content filtering and security control software is that you can also make use of multiple authentication methods. For instance, you can block access to protected websites by making use of different authentication methods.
For instance, you might want to allow access to protected websites via HTTP and HTTPS protocols. Then you could also permit access through cookies or digital certificates. With the help of a web content filtering and security control software, you can make the necessary changes in authentication settings and block websites accordingly. So, installing web content filtering and security software is a good idea to protect your business website(s).