This article applies to the Barracuda Web Security Gateway running firmware version 7.0 and higher.
With the Temporary Access feature of the Barracuda Web Security Gateway, you can let your students temporarily access websites that are blocked by school policy. You can create a list of domains (websites) that you want students to access and specify how long this access should be granted. The maximum allowed time frame is determined by your system administrator.
To get temporary access for your students, use the Temporary Access Portal. In the portal, you can request temporary access to certain domains for a specific period of time. When you submit your list of domains (or category of domains), you will receive a temporary access token for your students, or your administrator will advise you to just log in with credentials they provide you (or your network login) to bypass block pages. When your students browse any of the domains in your list, they can use the token to bypass block pages or you can log in. The token, as well as your login, has an expiration time and date, after which the domains in your list be blocked again per school policy.
In the Temporary Access Portal, you can view the status and expiration dates of the tokens (or login) for your temporary access requests. You can also choose to disable tokens before they expire.
Choosing Domains and Categories of Domains
You can request temporary access for specific domains, as well as entire categories of domains. Domains, or websites, are commonly categorized into groups so that schools and other organizations can create safe browsing policies for their users. For example, travel websites would be in the Travel category. To let students access travel websites when planning a school trip, you can request that they be granted temporary access to this category. However, use caution when allowing an entire category. Verify with your system administrator that the category does not have objectionable content.
Prohibited Categories and Domains
If your system administrator has prohibited any categories or domains from temporary student access, you will receive an error message if you request access to them. Before submitting your list of domains for temporary access, it is recommended that you let your system administrator review your list for any prohibited categories or domains.
Steps to Request Temporary Access for Students
When you have a list of domains or categories of domains that you want students to temporarily access, log into the Temporary Access Portal to submit your request and get access for your students.
- If you do not have a URL or a login and password for the Temporary Access Portal, request this information from your system administrator.
- If you did not receive a login and password, you might have been instructed to use your regular network (LDAP) login and password.
- The URL for the Temporary Access Portal will look something like this:
- Go to the URL for the Temporary Access Portal, enter the credentials that you received from your administrator, and click Login.
Figure 1. Temporary Access Portal Login page.
- On the Welcome page, click Submit New Temporary Access Request.
Figure 2. Temporary Access Portal Welcome page.
- In the Website section of the New Access Request form, you can add domains and categories for domains.
- To add a domain, enter the domain name in the text field and click Add.
To add a category for a domain, enter the domain name in the text field and then click Lookup Category to see what category the domain belongs to. When the category displays, select it and then click Add.
In the example shown in Figure 3, the teacher has requested the Tripadvisor.com domain and is about to request Expedia.com.
Figure 3. Requested site(s) for temporary access.
In the example shown in Figure 4, the category has been looked up for Expedia.com.
Figure 4. After clicking Lookup Category for the domain Expedia.com, the Travel category is displayed.
If the teacher had selected the Travel category, both the Tripadvisor.com and Expedia.com domains would have been included along with lots of other domains categorized as Travel. But if the teacher only wants the students to be able to access these two travel domains, then only those domains must be added.
After you enter all of the domains and categories for temporary student access, specify how long this access should be granted and optionally enter a comment that describes why access to these domains is being granted.
Click Submit Request. The Barracuda Web Security Gateway returns a token (as shown in Figure 5). Give the token and list of allowed domain names to your students, or use your login credentials if advised.
Figure 5. Getting a token that is associated with access to all domains and/or categories in a request.
To make another temporary access request, click Make Another Request at the bottom of the page.
To see a list of any other temporary access requests that you made over the past week, click Home in the upper right of the page.
How Students Gain Temporary Access to Regulated Websites
When your students try to access a blocked website for which you have requested temporary access, an Access Denied page displays.
- If your administrator instructed you to use tokens, give your students the token to enter to bypass the block page as shown in Figure 6.
- If your administrator has instructed you to use your login credentials instead of tokens, click the Temporary Access Using User Credentials as shown in Figure 6. The popup will refresh and you can then log in.
Students can now browse the site for the time frame that you specified when you submitted your temporary access request.
Figure 6. The student enters the token to bypass the block page.
Managing Temporary Access Requests and Tokens
When you log into the Temporary Access Portal, you can view a list of your temporary access requests on the home page. To view this list from another page, you can return to the home page by clicking Home in upper right of the portal. For each request, you can view the status and expiration dates of the associated tokens.
From the list of temporary access requests, you can manage tokens or view more information about the request:
- To disable a token before it expires, select the Disable check box.
- To extend the access time frame, click Copy to make a copy of the original request.
- To view more details for a request, click Details to view domains, categories, and comments.
Figure 7. List of temporary access requests made by bjones in the last week.