A report by Firewall vender Palo Alto shows that employees resort to some common tricks to get around IT security measures. Among these very popular is using proxy scripts in order to evade filters and using online p2p to download and install unsupported applications.
Palo Alto identifies CGIProxy and KProxy as two common proxy scripts. Basically, these sites are used to surf outside the web filter and have access to content blocked by IT. Of course, this is already an old issue, IT having to constantly supervise logs at work.The report also names web-based file sharing, such as YouSendit and MediaMax, as means of exchanging files. Palo Alto also reports that more than 90% of the networks subjected to survey had P2P applications installed and running.
Naturally, Palo Alto comes with a solution for these problems and a price for it. Items like proxy usage, P2P usage, Google Apps usage, streaming media, and other restricted access don’t require need a costly hardware to prevent. Though many IT shops have taken this measure, is the fact that after being installed these are often ignored.
If you just install a firewall or appliance like Websense and then forget about it, well, it won’t be of much help. However, policy enforcement can be hard, and, of course, reading logs and updating web filters are not really a priority in most IT offices.
There is yet another solution – download a FREE log filter and check out the keywords. If you use these to emphasize only important log data it will save you time, and lets you better observe what‘s happening on the network.