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Arvato Bertelsmann – Smoothwall Filter Case Study

What’s the background?

Arvato Government Services is an internationally recognised supplier of outsourcing services for public sector organisations.

Arvato provides IT services to over 150 primary and secondary schools, who in turn provide IT services to thousands of students across the Merseyside area.

A wide range of devices are filtered across the network including classroom PCs and tablets.

Arvato chose Smoothwall as its trusted technology provider following an extensive evaluation of other web filtering solutions. Other partners couldn’t provide the service and local filtering needs that Arvato’s network of schools needed.

What was the challenge?

Darren Knowles, Schools Team Leader at Arvato, needed a solution that allowed devolved policy management: “The overarching requirement was to enable our sites to manage their own filtering at a local level.”

There had been issues with the management of local filtering with their previous provider, Bloxx. In addition, the reliability and performance of the web filtering they were receiving from Bloxx was not up to the required standard: “There had been several cases of students accessing inappropriate content during school time.”

To make matters worse the reporting functionality on Bloxx was poor, and it was taking too long to generate the necessary reports; “Sometimes it would take up to 30 minutes to generate a report.”

How Smoothwall helped

Smoothwall recommended Smoothwall Filter because of its flexible real-time web filtering and SWURL capabilities, which ensures that web filter policies can be managed at a local level by designated managers.

Now managers have the flexibility to define filtering policies for different age groups: “I’ve never seen such a granular filter; there’s a big difference between what’s appropriate for a young child and an older teenager.”

Since implementing Smoothwall, there have been no reported incidents of students accessing inappropriate material: “Smoothwall detects potentially harmful content that other filters simply can’t see.”

Arvato’s council customers have benefitted from consistent and reliable reporting, which helps managers to make informed decisions: “Smoothwall’s comprehensive reporting has made the management of web filtering easy.”

The real difference for Arvato between former supplier Bloxx and new partner Smoothwall was the personal touch. Mike Long, Schools Account Manager at Arvato explains: “The best thing about Smoothwall is their staff; the service we’ve had has been excellent and the expert support team is always ready to help.”

The best thing about Smoothwall is their staff; the service we’ve had has been excellent and the expert support team is always ready to help.

Darren Knowles
Arvato Bertelsmann
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