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The need for CIAP

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The speed, reliability and economy at which businesses can access and distribute information, creates their competitive edge. Internet enables businesses to access and distribute huge variety of information. The last few years saw an exponential decline in the cost of Internet connectivity and the great improvements in quality and reliability of service. Arguably Internet is now, a very efficient force-multiplier for business.

Internet, if correctly harnessed, can yield rich dividends:

  • Improved productivity;
  • Employee efficiency;
  • Overall knowledge quotient;
  • Quick & economical assimilation of -
  • Business intelligence,
  • Distribution of commercial information.

Like any other wonderful facility or tool, employees, and other unknown entities can misuse internet too.

The technicians implementing any Internet Access or Content software or even trying to present a proof-of-concept to an organization will achieve “precious little”, without a CIAP. The uniqueness of each enterprise, make a universal CIAP quite ineffective. The CIAP should be as holistic and comprehensive as possible and specifically designed for each enterprise.

Various software are now available to distribute, restrict, define and filter the content that appears on your computers from the Internet. A large variety of such software is distributed commercially or even freely. There are software, that need to be installed on every computer; but they are very difficult to implement and manage in environments that have a large number of computers. In such environments, the software that enforces the Internet Use Policy across the enterprise must be implemented on the Internet Gateway. A variety of such software is available too, and one can always find something suitable. Building a realistic Corporate Internet Access Policy (CIAP) is however, far  more important, before any such software is implemented.

A corporate CIAP essentially strives to map the purpose of every user, computer or application that requires access to the Internet. Such maps minutely profile -

  • The purpose for which employees or the other infrastructure applications like emails, automatic software updates will be allowed Internet Access.
  • The amount of Internet connectivity resources that will be used for each of such purposes; the time-schedules during which Internet Use will be permitted for them, is also profiled. This helps the management to judge, the benefits to the organisation.

A corporate CIAP also must be micro-documented. This is very important, since the management should be aware of what policies have been set, their need, effective results It is also a guideline to future modulations, roll-backs of any portion of the policy. The documentation must start before the implementation of any such policies, and must be appended as the implementation proceeds, and considered an on-going process.