Providing Wi-Fi access for employees and guests has become a business essential. For many, public Wi-Fi access is accompanied by the need for an acceptable use policy, whether to limit bandwidth consumption or create a family friendly environment.
The evolution of Wi-Fi hardware has made it easier to deploy and manage wireless access, but more difficult to rely on traditional Secure Web Gateways for Web filtering. At a recent webcast, we shared how Umbrella Hotspot Edition, a lightweight cloud-based Web filtering solution, solves that problem. Not only is enforcing acceptable use through the cloud easier, it can also eliminate performance issues and reduce administrative overhead.
We had more questions during the webcast than we had time to answer, so I sat down with OpenDNS product manager Dima Kumets to get some additional insight. Below are the top five most-asked questions from the webcast.
1. How does Umbrella Hotspot Edition enforce acceptable use on all devices that connect to our company’s Wi-Fi network?
DNS is an essential Internet protocol that is used in every single Internet connection. When users ask to connect to Amazon.com while in your store, for example, you can use DNS to return that request with either the website itself, or a block page. Since DNS is used by all devices, from laptops and tablets to iPhones and Androids, it’s automatically enforcing policy when these devices are connected to Wi-Fi.
2. How do you prevent guests from bypassing the service by using other DNS/ports/VPN?
Occasionally a user will try to bypass the Umbrella Web filtering service by switching their DNS to another provider. This can easily be prevented by setting your router to block all port 53 traffic except traffic going to the OpenDNS resolvers. Umbrella also features a Proxy/Anonymizer category in the Content Filtering settings, which will block further attempts to bypass your appropriate use policy.
3. Does this work with all Wi-Fi access points?
Yes, Umbrella Hotspot Edition can be used with all Wi-Fi access points. The cloud-based delivery mechanism allows seamless and swift deployment – imagine the ability to deploy Web-filtering to every one of your hotspots in just one day, without having to leave the office. That’s the power of cloud-delivered security.
To make Umbrella deployment even easier, OpenDNS has partnered with both Aruba and Cradlepoint; we’ve integrated our management center into their standard interface, allowing you to save time by covering everything from one centralized dashboard.
4. Can this also work for an enterprise’s guest Wi-Fi or is it just for public Wi-Fi?
Umbrella Hotspot Edition is built specifically for guest and public Wi-Fi deployments – the effortless implementation, minimal administrative overhead, and low cost make it an ideal solution for the retail and hospitality industries, especially those with numerous locations. In addition, enforcing the same rules for both guests and employees is often a recipe for disaster – one side or another won’t be getting the policy they need. To ensure all parties have the appropriate level of filtering, consider using Umbrella Enterprise for your internal networks.
5. What does the process look like to get started on a trial?
Getting started on a free trial is easy, since Umbrella is a cloud-delivered service and you don’t actually have to install or download anything. A quick chat with one of our reps, and a simple configuration change in your DNS settings, and you can be up and running!