Darrick Wood School United Kingdom, Europe
Reliable Cyberoam Replaces FortiGate in UK’s Leading Educational Institution
About Darrick Wood School, Education

Darrick Wood School is a secondary school for boys and girls aged 7-13, and has a roll of 1700+ pupils. Established in 1975, it is situated in Orpington, London Borough of Bromley, United Kingdom. With an aim to remain in the forefront of educational development, Darrick Wood School provides an excellent learning environment to students complete with facilities incorporating the latest technology that contribute to its pupils' success.

The school has been awarded Specialist Technology College and Harris Centre of Excellence status. It also has a highly successful sixth form, and HIU (hearing impaired unit). In its Ofsted inspection during April 2009 it achieved 'Outstanding', the highest grade attainable.

Being the vast repository of information that it is, Internet contributes to our curriculum by being a major research tool for students and staff alike.

Mr. Mike Slater
Network Manager
Darrick Wood School

“Being the vast repository of information that it is, Internet contributes to our curriculum by being a major research tool for students and staff alike” said Mr. Mike Slater, Network Manager at Darrick Wood School. He further added, “It is essential for us to not only look after the security of our students and staff, but also protect our data from any internal breach or external attack”.

Darrick Wood School already had a network security solution in place, namely, a FortiGate 200B. But, in Mr. Slater‟s words, “It was failing to meet our standards of performance and reliability”. He noticed the following security issues.

Vulnerable to Web-based Attacks

Being connected to the Internet has both pros and cons. The major 'con' here is being exposed to various web-based, network attacks such as DoS, intrusion attempts, Phishing, Pharming, blended threats and more. Mr. Slater wanted to protect their network against such threats that would endanger the integrity of their data and security of all network users.

Need for Robust Web Filtering

“As a School, it remains our primary responsibility to ensure that our students are not exposed to any obscene material over the Web, even in instances when they themselves go seeking it”, said Mr. Slater. In addition to that, it was also necessary to discourage students from exposing their identities and locations to unknown sources over the Web, as in the case of Facebook or online games.

The Cyberoam Solution

After scouring the market for a suitable network security solution, which included analysing Fortigate, Smoothwall, Sophos, Juniper and Cisco products, Mr. Slater decided that Cyberoam is the best replacement for their previous FortiGate 200B. They bought Two (2) CR 500ia and deployed them in High Availability at their Data Center.

After Cyberoam deployment, the following benefits are noticed.

  • Layer 8 Technology: Identity-based Security

    CCyberoam 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, overcoming the limitations of conventional UTMs/firewalls which bind security to IP addresses alone. By implementing this Layer 8 security in their network, Mr. Slater can gain real-time visibility into the online activity of students based on their usernames which gives him an insight into ' Who is Doing What?' “The fact that we can create security policies based on usernames was Cyberoam's selling point for us”, said Mr. Slater.

  • Safeguarded Against Cyber Attacks

    Cyberoam's ICSA and Checkmark - dual certified stateful inspection firewall takes care of the 'cons' we talked about earlier by standing as an unrelenting sentry at the School's network gateway. Any unauthorized access is denied at the Gateway itself so there is no scope of illegitimate pilfering of data or harm to internal resources. Students are given controlled access to network and internet resources, ensuring that no security loopholes are left open.

    With a comprehensive database of 4000+ signatures, Cyberoam's Intrusion Prevention System adds a second layer of defence. It protects the School's data from several variants of spyware attacks, spoofing and DoS attacks in addition to keyloggers, Trojans and more.

  • Firm Control over Internet Surfing

    Cyberoam allows Mr. Slater to instantly block web sites and enforce acceptable usage policies on students, faculty and other staff alike. Cyberoam has a content filtering database of more than 44 million websites, categorized in 82+ categories. All unauthorized downloads, P2P applications, pirated audio and video streaming and other harmful content is now safely blocked. “Cyberoam gives us firm control over all Internet activities within the school premises. It helps us in ensuring protection and discipline among our pupils”, said Mr. Slate.

  • To Draw a Close

    Expressing his satisfaction with Cyberoam's performance, Mr. Slater said, “I chose Cyberoam because of its excellent pricing and Technical Support, and because its performance is second to none of the others. Cyberoam has done well in fulfilling my expectations”.