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My failed attempts at putting a Web Filter

Posted on Sunday, June 07, 2009 | By Gautam | In

I have my interns at one of the biggest government office in Rajasthan and my profile is that of a information security consultant (sounds good, doesn't it). The office like most government offices is terrified of the broadband bills that materialise at the beginning of every month. No one seems to use the net, no one seems to download anything but somehow due to some conspiracy the bills seem to get fatter and fatter and fatter.

In comes the consultant (i.e. me) and he's given the mandate of getting things under control. But we won't spend any money, he's told. Fair enough. I'm a great fan of open-source anyways and Untangled Web Server is the most logical answer. It filters the access, its free, its fast and its just what the doctor ordered.What does an office need? Access to mails, some sites, download extensions like .doc, .xls, .pdf and their ilk. You don't need access to porn sites, YouTube, social networking websites, torrents, mp3's, avi's and stuff, chats.

The proposal is made, the iso image (google it if you're new to this term) of Untangle is downloaded (at my own cost, I might add!!!) and everything is good to go. But the office forgot one thing- you need a harware to run a software on. This one required a stripped off P-4, 512 mb ram, 40 gigs of space on the HDD and 2 network cards. A pretty cheap affair for an office with budgets in crores.

But the required resource couldn't be gathered. The filter could not be installed and the fat bills could not be trimmed. Alas, when will we get over our short-sightedness!!!!!

Comments (3)

dude a very well written blog about the ignorance of IS in industry....anywez try using Paros proxy and c if it can help...

Sure thing..... but the problem remains with the hardware :(

that's the way things work in govt. offices. You can complain and groan about it, but cannot change it.

But looks like even you have adapted to the environment.... I remember that tweet of yours "eating up office's bandwidth by downloading loads of stuff" :)