Applies to: Nerdio for Azure (NFA) Professional and Enterprise users only.
Modifying Web Filtering using SafeDNS
SafeDNS provides online safety for private and corporate customers with internet filtering solutions that boost the Domain Name System (DNS) with features such as personalized web content filtering and protection from botnets, malware, and phishing.
For NFA Professional and Enterprise accounts, SafeDNS is included as a part of your Nerdio license. SafeDNS credentials may have been provided during your initial account provisioning. You can also reset your SafeDNS credentials from the Settings>Security Menu in the Nerdio Admin Portal.
Overview of SafeDNS Services
SafeDNS utilizes a combination of the SafeDNS server services, DNS forwarding and firewall rules in Nerdio for Azure to route internet traffic and requests through the SafeDNS service. SafeDNS (Safedns.com) offers web content filtering based on general areas that may be of concern (Security, Explicit, Illegal, Bandwidth hogs, etc). More granular controls are available if needed through the Safedns portal at safedns.com/auth/login/. Let's take a look at some of the controls SafeDNS has to offer.
SafeDNS' Web Filtering Module offers some pre-packaged filtering options, which are enabled by default. If a user was to attempt to access a site that is blocked by any of the filters, they may see a message that the "Connection was Refused", "Page Cannot be Displayed" or blocked message such as the one below. These messages can be modified under Settings>Blockpage.
You can see here that the website sharefile.com was blocked as it fell into the Torrents & P2P category.
Enabling or disabling these categories can be found in the Categories module in the SafeDNS portal (safedns.com/auth/login/). Here you will find the general categories for SafeDNS's web filters. These can be enabled or disabled as needed or requested to allow or deny access to sites in those categories.
White Listing and Black Listing Domains
Sometimes a website will fall into a category that is being blocked, but users will need access to a specific site. Other times there's a specific site that would need to be blocked that may not be categorized in SafeDNS. This is where the Allowlist and Denylist in the SafeDNS portal come in handy (safedns.com/auth/login/). As you can see in the screenshot below, we've added sharefile.com to the Allowlist. This would bypass any Web Filtering that would prevent a user from reaching that site. Adding to the Denylist works in a similar fashion, where a specified domain can be blocked if it is not in a Web Filtering category.
If you have any further questions regarding SafeDNS and its use in Nerdio for Azure, please feel free to contact us. Support for the utility and function of the product can occur by opening a ticket with SafeDNS.
SafeDNS is not required for NFA and is offered as a Nerdio PnP solution to better secure environments from day one. This licensing is included in your Nerdio subscription and is part of the entitlement when purchasing a Nerdio license. There is an option to remove this solution if there is an alternate product that a partner may prefer to use in its place.
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