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Internet Related/Filtering/Firewall Thread, Snapchat in Technical; Originally Posted by BDoyle Even though blocking the URLs noted above (feelinsonice...) is supposed to work it doesn't as there ...
  1. #16

    seawolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BDoyle View Post
    Even though blocking the URLs noted above (feelinsonice...) is supposed to work it doesn't as there is some sort of logic where Snapchat is using any SSL path on appspot.com to get by content filters. How to solve it? Block appspot.com entirely. Might break other things but it is easier to whitelist individual URLs than deal with Google's desire to bypass filters worldwide. Not allowing simple blocking of Apps for businesses or educational environments is unacceptable Google. Very close to blocking all Google sites if this keeps up.
    This solution doesn't work so well if you are using Google Apps for your school. It wasn't my choice to use Google Apps mind you (and I would block all of Google.com if I could), but if I do something to foul it up it will be my neck in a noose not Google's.

    EDIT: Yep, Wordle and dozens of other sites come up when I check my logs that use "appspot.com" domain and that's just from the past week. If I blocked appspot.com there would be a firestorm of grief we would get from the teachers and students.

    Anyone else have a less destructive method of blocking Snapchat? I can do it for Android devices, but not iOS.
    Last edited by seawolf; 21st February 2014 at 01:35 AM.

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    Our school is not using Google Apps across the board but we are using it. It did take some time to whitelist the specific Apps that were needed for school but our content filter was quick to identify those "?.appspot.com" sites. So you wouldn't want to start on a Monday and wait for the phone calls of anger and frustration. The firestorm is short lived unless there is an expectation that students and teachers need the freedom to download and use at will. Then it is not worth the pain.

    There seems to be a growing trend of App Developers to find ways to bypass content filters. My favorite so far is the use of content delivery networks by video streaming companies. Take Amazon Video for instance. Yes, you can block the URL for them but they farm out their App streaming to a content delivery network that has nothing to do with their video URL. *grumble*

    Another thing to check would be your wireless APs and Layer 7 rules (if they have that capability). See if they have instant messenger or social networking options where Snapchat might fall under.

    I know it has been requested of Apple to include a future "feature" that would allow for whitelist and blacklist of iOS Apps through third party MDMs. But that doesn't help the here and now.

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