Technical High School System Gets Integrated, Easy-to-Manage Security

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Summary

Profile

  • Camden County Technical School
  • Location: Camden County, New Jersey
  • Enrollment: approx. 2,000 on two campuses

Challenges

  • Blocking spam and malware
  • Regulatory (CIPA) Compliance
  • Regulating staff/student web usage
  • Securing remote users

Solution

  • Barracuda Email Security Gateway
  • Barracuda Message Archiver
  • Barracuda Web Security Gateway
  • Barracuda SSL VPN

Results

  • Network secured against spam and malware
  • Documented CIPA compliance
  • Reduction of wasted time and bandwidth
  • Secure network access for remote users

Security Challenges in a School-Based Network

Camden County Technical School is fully engaged in using technology both to streamline operations and to enhance the educational experience for students. But with students using school-owned laptops to access a growing number of online resources, network administrators are faced with new IT security challenges that an earlier generation of solutions is unable to address:

  • Malware introduced to the network through new vectors such as Web 2.0 applications and mobile devices
  • Streaming audio and video content consuming significant amounts of bandwidth
  • Students and staff wasting time and resources browsing during work hours
  • Tech-savvy students bypassing security measures using proxy servers and web-based messaging applications
  • Meeting regulatory requirements (CIPA) to protect students from offensive, threatening, or illegal content and contacts
"It’s incredibly easy to create highly granular access policies that differentiate among different user groups."
- Dino Valentino, Camden County Technical School

Chief Technology Officer Dino Valentino and his IT team considered a number of different solutions to address these challenges, and eventually narrowed their search to two vendors, SonicWall and Barracuda Networks. Ultimately, they chose four Barracuda Networks products for an integrated solution to provide security, access, and simplified network management:

  • Barracuda Email Security Gateway to protect the network from malware and to keep the email system from being overwhelmed with unwanted messages
  • Barracuda Web Security Gateway to keep students from being exposed to offensive, dangerous, or illegal web content and applications, and to keep staff productive by blocking access to time- and bandwidth- wasting web sites
  • Barracuda Message Archiver to securely and easily archive email along with Web 2.0 messages such as those sent through Facebook or LinkedIn
  • Barracuda SSL VPN to provide secure network access to staff working from remote locations, without the headaches associated with configuring and managing a traditional IPsec VPN

According to Valentino, identity-aware policy enforcement was one of the most important considerations in the decision to choose Barracuda Networks: “Unlike the other solutions we considered for web filtering, the Barracuda product integrates well with our Active Directory/LDAP system. This makes it incredibly easy to create highly granular access policies that differentiate among different user groups, such as students, teachers, and office staff. And if I spot a sudden spike in bandwidth use, I can see immediately which user and application are responsible. It helps us both comply with CIPA requirements and improve staff productivity."

"Barracuda has done a really good job of creating a central management portal that’s designed for ease of use."
- Dino Valentino, Camden County Technical School

Integration and ease of use were also significant factors: “Some of the solutions we looked at were clearly going to require a lot of staff training, and significant resources for configuration and ongoing management,” says Valentino. “Barracuda has done a really good job of creating a central management portal that’s designed for ease of use. We get great visibility into our network, and a simple, intuitive way to deploy updates and configuration changes across the whole system.”

Valentino and his team also value the ability to provide secure remote access to the network: “The Barracuda SSL VPN is pretty amazing. At the back end, deployment and management is literally a point-and-click task, totally intuitive. And the security it provides not only makes us happy to let staff access the network from remote locations, it also means that as our e-learning projects evolve, we’ll feel confident about letting students do the same thing.”

Conclusions

IT administrators at Camden County Technical found that Barracuda Networks was the right security partner to ensure that students are protected even as the district rolls out its increasingly sophisticated initiative to put technology to work in the classroom. The Barracuda solution’s advanced, identityaware capabilities, along with its ease of use, centralized management, and fixed pricing (no per-user license fees) made it the best choice for an organization that requires totally reliable security, but must achieve it with limited budgetary and personnel resources.

For information about Barracuda’s K-12 IT solutions, please visit www.barracuda.com/products/k12 or call Barracuda for a free 30-day evaluation at 1-408-342-5400 or 1-888-268-4772 (US & Canada).

About Barracuda

Barracuda provides cloud-connected security and storage solutions that simplify IT. These powerful, easy-to-use, and affordable solutions are trusted by more than 150,000 organizations worldwide and are delivered in appliance, virtual appliance, cloud, and hybrid deployments. Barracuda’s customer-centric business model focuses on delivering high-value, subscription-based IT solutions that provide end-to-end network and data security. For additional information, please visit barracuda.com.

About Barracuda Security and Storage Solutions

Barracuda Networks provides cloud-connected security and storage solutions that simplify IT. These powerful, easy-to-use and affordable solutions are trusted by more than 150,000 organizations worldwide and are delivered in appliance, virtual appliance, cloud and hybrid deployments. Barracuda’s customer-centric business model focuses on delivering high-value, subscription-based IT solutions that provide end-to-end network and data security and help customers address security threats, improve network performance and protect and store their data. All Barracuda solutions can be managed centrally through integrated, easy-to-use web interfaces that support configuration, monitoring and reporting.