Technical Service Members are Commonly Asked, “Why?”

LoginWhy must I login into the web browser to 
access the Internet?
You only need to log into the browser when using MAC computers. PC Computers will take the login information that you used to access the computer, 
and pass it along to the Sophos Web Filter. So the experience for the end user is transparent. MACs work differently when passing credentials, so Sophos Web filter will prompt all users the first time they open up 
a web browser (Chrome, Safari, Firefox) on the MACs. Once signed in (sometimes 1-3 prompts) you will not have to sign in again till you close the browser and reopen it.

ICTS strives to ensure users can access the Internet 
to access educational materials needed to teach the curriculum while at the same time filtering out 
inappropriate content. Teachers/staff need different access than students. By logging in with your CPS network credentials, it identifies you to the Sophos Web Filter. The web filter will determine what role you play. For instance, if you are a teacher/staff you will have access to some sites that would normally be blocked for students (example: YouTube). This allows teacher/staff to use YouTube content that has educational value.
This new way of signing into the web filter is different and more secure than in the past. In the past with Barracuda, you would be prompted to enter your network credentials when you accessed blocked content. With a successful login, you would be allowed to access the blocked content for 40 minutes. After 40 minutes you would be prompted again or the video you were showing to your class would just stop. Then the teacher/staff would have to open up another instance of the web browser, access a blocked site, then enter their network credentials to access blocked content. After logging in again, the video would resume playing for another 40 minutes. This was a painful process for teacher/staff to deal with in the middle of instructional time. With the new setup, this will not occur.

Another advantage of this new procedure is improved security. Once the browser is closed with the Sophos Web Filter, the connection to the internet is more secure. Here is a scenario using the old Barracuda system:

A teacher/staff is researching sites in the computer lab and bypasses the Barracuda web filter in order to verify educational content. Within five minutes, the teacher logs off the computer. Now a student comes along right after to use the same computer in the lab and logs in with their network credentials. Barracuda would still see that computer as able to bypass the web filter for the remainder of the initial 40 minute window. This could then cause students to be susceptible to accessing blocked content.

With the new system, once the browser is closed, the user will not be able to access blocked content.

As we continue to improve and enhance this service offered, we thank 
you all for your patience in support of teaching and learning.
  
Why, while connecting to CPS wireless networks must we login with our network credentials?

ICTS Offers access to the CPS wireless (as well as CRLS wireless) network for staff and students to access CPS network resources, from a computer or device that is not permanently in the building. This device can be a CPS issued laptop or a personal device. The purpose of logging into the CPS wireless network is to authenticate who you are with CPS. Some 
of the resources that you will obtain while accessing the CPS wireless 
network are access to bypass the Sophos Web Filter (for Staff) and access to CPS printers. If you know you will not need to bypass the web filter 
or will not need to print then, you can connect to the Public wireless 
network which does not require any login information. The Public 
wireless network will allow you browse the internet to all sites that are 
categorized as Safe or Educational.

Public wireless network, will allow access to any CPS network resource that you can access from outside our network. So examples are CPS 
Website, FirstClass email, Moodle, and a few others.

If you have questions about the technology that ICTS has implemented, please send an email to ICTS-Tech-Why via FirstClass, or 
[email protected] from outside CPS.
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