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New EtherShield Appliance Provides Internet Filtering for Smaller Networks

InternetSafety.com introduces EtherShield, a hardware appliance that provides low-cost plug-and-play Internet filtering for organizations with 10 to 200 users. The system's ability to block objectionable or leisure-time websites, instant messaging applications, chat rooms, newsgroups and peer-to-peer file sharing programs like BitTorrent helps increase employee productivity, free network bandwidth that is being used for non-work-related purposes, and protect organizations from potential legal liabilities associated with inappropriate content.

EtherShield filters every computer on the network without requiring software installation or configuration of settings on each machine. The database of blocked websites is automatically updated daily to keep up with changing online content without the need for manual database downloads. These features and easy point-and-click setup choices make the system ideal for smaller businesses, schools, churches and libraries that may not have professional IT staffs.

EtherShield utilizes advanced Web blocking technology developed for InternetSafety.com's Safe Eyes parental control software. It filters websites in 35 categories ranging from sports to pornography.

Other features include:

Easy Filtering Customization Organizations can specify which of EtherShield's 35 categories of websites they want to block, exempt specific sites from the list, block additional sites by URL or keyword, and create a list of keywords that cannot be used in search engines.

Optional Program Blocking IM, chat rooms, newsgroups and peer-to-peer file sharing programs can be blocked or allowed on a one-by-one basis simply by selecting from a list, saving bandwidth and potentially reclaiming hours of time spent on personal Internet activities.

Filtering by Machine Different filtering parameters can be applied to different computers or groups of computers. The marketing department may need access to social networking sites like Facebook, for example, while the rest of the organization does not.

Usage Logging If a user attempts to visit a blocked site, the system generates a log entry and maintains a database of policy violations.

EtherShield is a 1U 19-inch rackmountable appliance designed to be installed between the organization's Internet router and computer network. It can be used on networks with any combination of PCs and Macs. Pricing begins at under $1,000 for 10 users.

"Web surfing on company time and the associated risk of legal liabilities is a growing problem. One survey by America Online and Salary.com indicated that the average American worker now spends more than two hours per workday on non-business activities, with personal Web surfing ranking as the #1 distraction by far," says Shane Kenny, President and COO of InternetSafety.com. "Our EtherShield product provides an easy and inexpensive way for smaller organizations to curtail personal Internet use that interferes with employees getting their work done."

More information is available at www.ethershield.com

TAGS: IT
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