College of Banking and Financial Studies, Oman, Asia
Cyberoam Offers Total Internet Security to College Banking and Financial Studies
About College of Banking and Financial Studies (CBFS), Education

The College of Banking and Financial Studies (CBFS) is a government organization established under a Royal Decree as the Oman Institute of Bankers in 1983.

The College has been helping the financial services industry with its varying educational and training needs. Over the years, the College has been offering programmes and courses, which are adapted to the emerging needs of Oman and has been an active partner in the country‘s thrust towards Omanization of the banking sector.

The courses offered are of a high caliber, which prepare the learners for work in any sector of the economy - public practice, industry, commerce or eventually take up further educational pursuits.

Thus, Internet research has come to be recognized as an essential study tool in all higher education courses in developed countries.

“Internet is one of the most essential tools for CBFS. College can not run without Internet connections. Hence Internet security is of prime concern.”

Mr. Shihab Hamed Al Yarobi
IT Administrator

According to Mr. Shihab Hamed Al Yarobi, IT Administrator at CBFS, the college was facing the following security and connectivity challenges related to its academic activities.

Access Control and Intrusion Prevention

Mr. Yarobi wanted a solution that would control the entire Internet traffic and provide a level of protection from network-based attacks by allowing good traffic and denying bad traffic as defined by a security policy. They need to protect the network against intentional and unintentional intrusion attempts, and Denial of Service attacks.

The college network covered student information, training programs, as well as general foundation programmes. This sensitive information was under constant threat from spyware, and DoS attacks and many more. It was also significant to put a stop to any incident of communication loss or data tampering due to eavesdropping attacks from outsiders.

Scheming Malware & Spam

In the absence of gateway anti virus & anti-spam, users surfing the Web were constantly exposed to the danger of malware infestation. These malware attacks often took a blended form through email attachments, their confidential documents etc. These attacks had the potential to modify productive documents and knock down significant data. As a result the productivity suffered.

The spam filtering was required to be totally automated and perform irrespective of the language and content of the mail with an absolute minimum amount of false positives - as the college cannot afford to have spam mails in the mail boxes.

A perimeter level anti-virus & anti-spam solution was required that would protect the network, scan and clean any malware or spyware over the network to ensure the contents‘ sanctity.

Throttled Bandwidth - Sharing Internet

Bandwidth costs contribute to a huge chunk of college expenditure; it is the best interest of the college to ensure that these costs are not being wasted on non-productive purposes such as social media, games and entertainment.

Opening up access to music, video, social networking, gaming sites for students resulted in bandwidth getting “choked”. So they wanted to define security and bandwidth management policies. Bandwidth needs to be managed and prioritized to achieve maximum business advantage. They wanted to ensure productive use of bandwidth.

The Cyberoam Solution

CBFS looked into a number of security products including Watch Guard Firebox X5500e UTM Bundle, SonicWALL NSA 2400 Total Secure, FortiGate 310B and Juniper SRX3400 in order to address their business challenges. The search was on for an appliance which would take care of their all above requirements. So they felt that Cyberoam was the apparent choice. The college then deployed Two (2) CR 300i at the Oman in their head office in Gateway mode.

The business benefits were as follows:

  • Identity-based Security

    Cyberoam UTM delivered unexpected value additions such as the award-winning identity-based security feature which provides full visibility of user activities in the network. To elaborate, after integrating Cyberoam into the CBFS network infrastructure, CBFS used its Active Directory Services (ADS) to include all CBFS Internet users in the database so their online activities could be further monitored.

  • Firewall and Intrusion Prevention

    Cyberoam firewall is ICSA and Checkmark certified - provides granular access controls over Internet traffic and the network resources. Coupled with Intrusion Prevention module, Cyberoam UTM can counter any Denial of Service attack. Mr. Yarobi now felt the network is secure.

  • Gateway level Antivirus & Anti-Spam

    Cyberoam‘s gateway anti virus pickets all the web and mail traffic - SMTP, IMAP, POP3, HTTP, HTTPS and FTP-o-HTTP protocols and makes sure that no malware or spyware creeps through the boundary and the network is fully safe and sound against malware including root-kits, viruses, worms, Trojans, spyware, backdoors, key-loggers and more.

    Each and every file going through gateway is scanned against antivirus engine that is powered by more than 4 million signatures. Furthermore, the anti-virus rakes over more than 40 formats of compressed files and even freezes attachments for specified file types such as executables, media files, PDF, zipped files etc. before these blended threats can sabotage the network.

    “The SPAM killer also helped our mail server to distinguish the unwanted mails and give great relief to the users”, said Mr. Yarobi. Recurrent Pattern Detection (RPD) powered signature-less anti spam technology works instantly on deployment, with the least human intervention and is language independent. It blocks spam in any language regardless of the content, e.g. image, audio, video or zip-based spam. The anti spam feature is also equipped with Virus Outbreak Detection. This protects the organization against any zero day attack.

    This saves a lot of bandwidth & protects students from viruses, phishing, and spyware threats.

  • Bandwidth Management

    Cyberoam solution allowed user based limit on bandwidth, access time and volume data transfer. “I can now prioritize the organization‘s bandwidth usage as per business requirements with more effective controls on which user consumes how much bandwidth (upload and download limits) during any time of the day”, said. Mr. Yarobi. This helped the college in controlling the user behavior on the Internet.

  • Enhanced Reporting

    Cost-free On-appliance comprehensive reporting is one of Cyberoam's most significant features. Reports include „Internet bandwidth usage‘, „top accessed sites‘, Google search reports and many more, which enhance the visibility of users‘ online behaviour. The „traffic discovery‘ report helps the administrator identify the amount of bandwidth used by various applications.

    In simpler words, I can say that Cyberoam UTM is just like a power packed box of large number of security features.” said. Mr. Yarobi.