Each day, more than 2,500 students, staff, faculty and guests connect to Richland Community College’s networks from any of its six distributed sites. The school has been serving the educational needs of eight counties in South Carolina for 40 years, and is expecting continued growth and expansion in coming months. In order to balance unrestricted Web access, and the security needs of both the school and its students, RCC was searching for a way to protect against malware without backhauling or proxying traffic.
At the time, RCC was leveraging a combination of homegrown and purchased Internet security and Web filtering solutions, including a proxy-based Web content filtering system that could easily be disabled in some browsers. Due to limited resources, and the difficulty of deploying existing solutions to multiple locations, Internet access at remote facilities sites was left unfiltered. This approach resulted in RCC’s small, four-person IT department constantly cleaning up malware infections on desktop computers.
“As our student population grew, the number of devices on our networks at any given time exploded, and eliminating malware infections became a critical priority for us,” said Joe Feinstein, IT Manager for RCC. “We have a responsibility to protect our students’ and faculty’s private data and offer a safe computing environment for everyone who accesses our networks. We also need to stay compliant with Higher Ed Internet mandates.”
After evaluating several proxy-based malware protection solutions, RCC selected lightweight Umbrella Enterprise because it was the only service that didn’t require additional resources to be allocated for regular management and maintenance. Feinstein explained, “Umbrella is the only solution that is truly set-it-and-forget-it. We can block access to compromised sites at the DNS layer, which results in proactive protection that’s reliable and easy to manage.”