How to set up a “Facebook block” on one’s corporate network
“It’s a sin to think badly of someone, but, very often, you’re right.”
This principle is the one that, more or less unconsciously, governs the thoughts of many entrepreneurs when they begin to investigate ways to achieve “blocking not working on Facebook.”
Literally, we could translate it as “blocking and making Facebook nonfunctional” within one’s corporate network.
Productivity suffers from the use of social networks; it is an incontrovertible fact.
Many people may give in to the temptation to “just take a look” at the social network which has the most users in the world while at work.
Just five minutes can turn into hours, especially on an annual basis.
Here is where entrepreneurs and IT managers around the world must, therefore, find technically and economically sustainable solutions in order to block the use of Facebook within the corporate network.
What are the possible solutions? Let’s look at some of them.
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1. Choosing a firewall that supports website filtering
Many firewalls provide the network administrator with precise content filtering.
We talked about it here, giving Mikrotik as an example. By acquiring the IP addresses of a given domain (in the example, we are talking about facebook.com), we can then ask the firewall to discard all browsing requests to those destinations.
The problem with this solution lies in its managerial and computational burdens.
In fact, from the management point of view, it forces the IT manager to continuously monitor all the domains of a given website (Facebook, for example, has many related domains that are always evolving). In addition, this process is quite burdensome in terms of resource utilization.
When one wants to block browsing to a particular IP, the rules that a network administrator needs to write on the firewall are relatively simple. All one has to do is block DNS requests to that address, and everything will work properly.
The internet, however, is a dynamic world, not a static one, and so we actually have to ask our firewall to continuously read all requests and compare them with a list of ip addresses, which, in turn, has to be continuously fed by monitoring all the domains in the relevant social.
Moreover, today we are only dealing with Facebook, but, obviously, our IT manager will have to replicate this work for all “unproductive” platforms on which employees may be wasting time.
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2. Purchase of content blocking software
Another possible solution for achieving perfect “blocking not working on Facebook” within one’s company may be to purchase content blocking software which can be installed on each individual workstation.
There are many “host-based” solutions on the market which enable this setup.
However, inherent in the name itself is their limitation: this solution restricts only the host on which it is installed and has no effect on the corporate network.
Costs aside, the entrepreneur’s control over this solution is partial.
Especially in smaller companies, where perhaps private devices are also allowed to be used or where Wi-Fi is available for employee use, the software solution may have little impact on productivity.
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3. DNS filtering
DNSs are, for all intents and purposes, “the navigators” of the web. Just as, in order to reach a particular destination, you program the address on the touch screen of your car, you do the same thing on the web by utilizing DNSs.
Through “positive manipulation” of DNSs, therefore, we can decide which destinations to allow and which to prohibit.
Moreover, by performing this “manipulation” at the head of the entire network, it will affect all devices connected to it, regardless of individual network settings.
Here is where implementing “blocking not working on facebook” becomes just a rule within the corporate policy.
Since the global DNS ecosystem “knows all the destinations,” the network administrator will not have to worry about populating the banned address lists. He will only need to set up the globally filtered DNSs, and the rest of the work will be done by them.
The only basic foresight the network administrator must have is to redirect all DNS requests to the addresses of the service of choice, to block even the “sly ones” who, by changing the DNS setups in their network cards, think they can circumvent company policy.
In this sense, FlashStart is the ideal traveling companion for network administrators because it allows for the setting up of social blocking (of Facebook but not only) from the web interface, relieving the corporate firewall from this burden.
Moreover, should the entrepreneur also wish not to be totally unpopular in the eyes of his or her employees, it will be easy to set up a temporary unblocking in the use of social media, perhaps during break times, thus mediating between production needs and those for “quiet time.”
You can activate the FlashStart® Cloud protection on any sort of Router and Firewall to secure desktop and mobile devices and IoT devices on local networks.