Updated: August 13, 2021

Overview of DNS Filtering

DNS Filtering is a cloud-based, AI-driven content filtering and threat protection service based on DNSFilter. It is integrated with, and configured in N-able N-central within minutes, with no installation of additional software necessary.

How does it work?

DNS Filtering uses the Domain Name System (DNS) protocol. When applications on your network make domain-name requests, these requests are sent to the DNSFilter servers, where they are matched against threat feeds and your policy settings. If a request is to a malicious/blocked domain, the user is diverted. This ensures that unwanted activity is cutoff at the root, because the request never makes it to the blocked/infected domain. It also comprehensively covers all devices on your network, from servers and computers to printers and tablets - because DNS is essential for most network connections to be established. Some of the features of DNS Filtering include:

  • Content Filtering
    • You can filter content by using a wide variety of filtering categories to block or allow sites with questionable content at your discretion.
    • DNS Filtering allows an unlimited number of domains to be added to an Allow list/Block list policy, allowing you to have complete control over which domains and subdomains you want users to access. You can also perform a CSV import of domain lists.
    • Newly seen domains are categorized in real-time by the Artificial Intelligence scanning engine.
  • Threat Protection
    • DNS Filtering uses a multi-pronged approach towards security, which results in robust threat intelligence. You can block sources of malware and phishing, as well as next-gen threats such as botnets and cryptomining.
    • DNS Filtering uses threat feeds maintained by the global security community, and reported by humans resulting in highly reliable data.
    • DNS Filtering works with US and UK-based governmental organizations to prevent dangerous activity.
    • Newly registered domains, newly seen domains, and domains with suspicious characteristics pass through a rigorous analysis and scoring process to provide heuristic blocking that other security companies wouldn't catch until after fielding a customer case.
    • By trading fully anonymous security and content filtering big data with other security firms, DNS Filtering implements trusted data feeds from the world's leading security organizations.
  • Roaming Client
    • DNS Filtering provides endpoint software that is installed on a managed device that provides off-network protection while browsing the internet.
    • From an N-central perspective, an agent is installed on the device which monitors all DNS requests on the device, and then identifies those requests to either allow the request to proceed, or deny the request and re-direct to a blocked page notification.
    • Windows Devices Only!
      DNS Filtering Roaming Client is only supported on Windows devices.

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