Blank gif
Section1
An Educator's Guide to Technology and the Web
Search Internet@Schools
Subscribe Today!

View Current Issue
View Past Issues

Internet @ Schools

Websense

By Charles G. Doe - Posted Mar 1, 2012
Bookmark and Share

Company: Websense, Inc., 10240 Sorrento Valley Road, San Diego, CA 92121, (800) 723-1166 or (858) 320-8000, www.websense.com

Price: This depends on which components are purchased and the number of people using it. Contact the company or a secondary supplier for individual situations.

Audience: Websense is marketed to K–12 education settings in addition to businesses, colleges, and others.

Format: Websense and various parts of it are available in software, web, or console versions.

System Requirements: Apple, Windows, or Linux versions require newer computers with newer browsers and faster internet connections.

Description: Educational facilities serving K–12 students need to provide safe access to Web 2.0 resources for students and staff, while also complying with laws such as the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA), the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), and data retention and retrieval requirements. Another challenge faced is savvy students attempting to circumvent acceptable use policies. Websense security solutions help K–12 schools address these challenges, enabling productive use of the web; protecting against inbound threats such as spam, malware, and blended threats; and helping to ensure compliance.

 

REPORT CARD
Overall Rating:4 Stars
Installation:A
Content/Features:A
Ease of Use:A
Product Support:A

Reviewer Comments:

Installation: This a matter of purchasing or subscribing to parts of the solution from Websense and/or secondary suppliers and having them set it up on-site as needed. Installation Rating: A

Content/Features: Websense is a global company with offices in many countries. Its Websense TRITON solution provides unified content security to safely enable social media, cloud computing, and mobile working, while preventing data loss and reducing costs and complexity.

Websense Web Security solutions inspect inbound and outbound content, protecting organizations against web malware, preventing sensitive data loss, and enhancing employee productivity. Websense TruHybrid deployment supports on-premise appliances and security as a service (SaaS), while managing the entire environment.

Users can choose the deployment option suitable for their unique operational requirements, without being forced to manage multiple systems or to deal with multiple vendors. The Websense Web Security solution, for example, can be deployed as on-premise software, a V-Series appliance, SaaS, or a hybrid offering.

With some programs, IT staff must spend hours adjusting access to websites that teachers need for particular lessons because their security solution does not allow delegating administration. Websense security solutions have a simplified, centralized administration that includes the ability to set access to administrative and reporting functions according to a user’s role.

Web Security solutions help prevent students and staff from accessing inappropriate content or downloading malicious code through market-leading web security filtering.

Advanced application controls also let you set policy over protocols including instant messaging, P2P, proxy avoidance, and streaming media, and highly granular bandwidth controls help prioritize bandwidth.

All in all, this is a useful program that has been well-thought-out and thoughtfully designed. However, it is complicated and may not be useful in less-demanding situations. Content/Features Rating: A

Ease of Use: This is a complicated program and is intended for IT professionals to set up. Once completed and with some training, students and staff should have little difficulty. Ease of Use Rating: A

Product Support: Support is available by product/feature, through a solution center, through a technical library, and via forums and tools and policies, online contact, tech alerts, and support webinars. Product Support Rating: A

Recommendation: This could be very useful to K–12 schools with many computer users. While I do recommend it, I also recommend contacting Websense or a secondary supplier to see if it would be useful in your particular situation. Recommended.

Reviewer: Charles Doe (charliegd@sbcglobal.net) is a 39-year teacher, including 10 years as elementary media specialist in Hastings Area Schools in Hastings, Mich. For the past 12 years, he has written articles and reviews for Internet@Schools.


 
Blank gif