JIMZ School, United Kingdom
JIMZ School - Building a Secure, Reliable Network through Cyberoam UTM
About Jaamiatul Imaam Muhammad Zakaria School (JIMZ), Education

Jaamiatul Imaam Muhammad Zakaria School is a well established girls‘ boarding school situated in Clayton on the moor on the outskirts of the City of Bradford. It provides full-time Islamic and secondary education for nearly 500 girls aged between eleven and nineteen.

The school aims to provide an education where girls can attain the highest levels of spiritual, moral and Islamic awareness and in close conjunction with this, the highest levels of physical and intellectual achievement of which they are capable.

Our sensitive information was under threat from spyware, and DoS attacks.

Mr. Ishtiyaq Vawda
IT Manager
JIMZ School


According to Mr. Ishtiyaq Vawda, IT Manager at JIMZ School, the school was facing the following security and connectivity challenges related to its day-to-day activities.

Firewall

The school‘s network covered student information, training programs, as well as other sensitive information which was under threat from spyware, and DoS attacks. It was also significant to put a stop to any incident of communication loss or data tampering due to eavesdropping attacks from outsiders. The network is a mission critical component of the core academic business of JIMZ‘s school, and it‘s harder and harder to manage.

Mr. Vawda wanted a solution that would control Internet traffic and provide a level of protection from network-based attacks.

Spam and Malware Menace

Spam and blended threats consisting of spyware and Trojans were the prime source of concern. Almost 90% of all email traffic was spam. Most of the time, the school‘s network was clogged with unwanted and unsolicited emails. A solution was required to keep emails secure and inboxes clean.

Ideally it would be a ‘deploy-and-forget‘ solution that didn‘t need to be ‘trained‘ to identify spam emails. In this light, the spam filtering was required to be totally automated and perform irrespective of the language and content of the email with an absolute minimum amount of false positives.

Keep an eye on Website Access

The school wanted to monitor and restrict its users from accessing unproductive sites such as Music, Video, Social networking & Streaming media. Phishing, Pharming and malicious Websites also needed to be plugged away. Content filtering was needed to protect the users from accessing these types of websites. In the case of blended threats, Mr. Vawda was looking for a solution that could block all illicit download over the Internet.

The Cyberoam Solution

In order to address their challenges, JIMZ School looked into a number of security products including WatchGuard, Zyxel, and Smoothwall. However, after seeing a trial demo of Cyberoam by Galtec Solutions, they took the decision of deploying a Cyberoam CR35ia UTM appliance at the head office in gateway mode.

The benefits were as follows:

  • Layer 8 Technology - Identity Based Security

    Cyberoam UTM‘s Layer 8 technology provides a robust network security system which can include a user‘s human identity as part of the firewall rule matching criteria. It treats user identity as the 8th Layer or the human layer in the network protocol stack, enabling educational institutes to overcome the limitations of conventional UTMs/firewalls which bind security to IP addresses alone. By implementing Layer 8 security in their networks, administrators can gain real-time visibility into the online activity of users while creating security policies based on their usernames. Mr. Vawda used Cyberoam‘s Active Directory (AD) facility to achieve the task of integrating JIMZ school user‘s in the network through a wizard to import users.

  • Firewall Protection

    ICSA and Checkmark - dual certified Cyberoam‘s stateful inspection firewall now cordons off JIMZ‘s network against any unauthorized access. JIMZ‘s users are given controlled access to network and internet resources, ensuring that no security loopholes are left open.

  • Up-to-date Protection from Viruses and Spam

    Cyberoam‘s Gateway Anti-Spam solution has a spam catch rate of over 98% and absorbs a large portion of junk mails at JIMZ School with its IP reputation filters before they hit the mail servers. At the next level, Cyberoam‘s RPD-based content-agnostic anti-spam solution offers protection against foreign characters and image-based spam with almost no cases of false positives. Finally, Cyberoam‘s Virus Outbreak Detection (VOD) feature automatically detects and blocks any new malware attacks emerging from emails.

  • Premium Filtering

    With a database powered with 82 categories and more than 44 million sites, Mr. Vawda has unrivalled flexibility to configure security policies. The Content Filtering features makes sure that all P2P and Instant Messengers are blocked and that there are no data breaches.

  • Reporting

    Mr. Vawda said, “The reporting capabilities are an essential component of the Cyberoam appliance. We consult the activity logs and reports on a weekly basis to ensure that the students and staff are using the Internet appropriately and have the information on hand when dealing with students who abuse our Internet Usage Policy.”