One piece of software that recently caught my attention is an Internet monitoring software. The program is called GFI WebMonitor and it is a complete web platform for securing your enterprise. The risks the Internet poses to businesses are numerous and it is nothing but common sense that you need reliable and robust software to defend yourself against the dangers of the Net.
Sure, you can’t say there is no choice of Internet monitoring software but when you are shopping at the enterprise level and want a complete package rather than having to deploy tens of separate programs that don’t get on well together, the choices aren’t that many. When you add price to that, actually it seems that you are almost out of options.
Fortunately, every now and then you can find a good Internet monitoring program at an affordable price. I guess this is what draw me to GFI WebMonitor. I downloaded the free trial and test-run it a bit. My impressions are only positive. Well, maybe if I put it to some extremely rigorous tests only an evil ex QA can think of, I might be able to find a few bugs here and there but without putting extreme pressure to it, my impressions are that GFI WebMonitor is really good for the tasks it is expected to perform.
GFI WebMonitor comes in two varieties. I downloaded and installed the more ordinary one because the other one is for Microsoft ISA/TMG and since I don’t run Microsoft ISA/TMG, I didn’t need it. Also, out of the two modes of operation (Proxy and Gateway, shown in the screenshot below), I tried the Proxy mode only but even this mode has all the things I need.
When you enter the Proxy mode, you will see something similar to the screenshot below:
This is the main screen of GFI WebMonitor and it shows at a glance all the Internet activities you are monitoring. Basically, with the help of GFI WebMonitor you can control which sites your employees access and make sure that their downloads are clean from malware. If you keep your GFI databases updated at all times, this will seriously decrease the risk of spreading viruses and other pests on your network.
You can even monitor the so-called hidden downloads – i.e. files downloaded automatically, without the user’s consent. Such files are the most dangerous ones because users are not aware they are downloading them. Very often this is the exact mechanism in which malware is distributed – stealthily behind the user’s back.
The Monitoring section of GFI WebMonitor shows a lot of interesting stuff, such as bandwidth consumption, sites history, users history, etc. This data is useful to know because when for instance somebody has been downloading fat movies and everybody else is left with a slow connection, the problem isn’t that your Internet connection lacks bandwidth. Also, when you see that particular employees are on the Top Surfers list or on the Top Policy Breakers list, this should ring a bell for you.
The WebSecurity section is the place where you can configure your policies and antimalware/anti-phishing rules. By default there are three antivirus engines you use for free with GFI WebMonitor – BitDefender, Kaspersky, and Norman. These are three leading antimalware providers, so it is really a bargain that you get them together with GFI WebMonitor.
GFI WebMonitor is really cool. I liked its many functionalities and elegant design. One of the things that impressed me in particular is that GFI WebMonitor comes with tons of documentation. I really like it when a product is well documented. This is great if you are stuck with a problem or if you want to learn the product in details. All in all, my impression is that GFI WebMonitor is an Internet monitoring software worth trying in your enterprise.