You gotta give them credit!

So, the latest trick the little sprogs have is quite impressive. The content filtering systems in school scans all traffic for certain keywords, websites, url’s, file extensions, etc. and decides whether to allow or deny access. One way to try and get around it is to use a web-based anonymiser that cloaks the website you request – basically, you type an address in, the anonymiser site grabs it and displays. Fine, except the majority have been blocked from the start, with word lists setup to block requests when they search for words like “anonymous”.
Imagine my surprise then when the logs within the last couple of hours starting flashing up with sites visited by kids. The real-time logs check for certain websites and have them blocked anyway, so was nice to see game sites appearing. Basically, some game sites don’t contain the word “game” anywhere in it, so you can only block it by knowing the exact URL. Checking the referer for these keywords brought up some interesting sites. The little buggers have been running through Google France and Germany to search for anonymous website services, as they’ve clicked that searching in a foreign language bypasses the filter, allowing them to access some sites. Which is nice.

It wasn’t until a group were dragged out by their ears and shown the real-time logs along with the keywords associated with their requests that they stopped smirking, thinking they’d got one over on me. I’m thinking two weeks ban should suffice – they’ll be finished school by then on study leave. Will help them focus on using a text book rather spending an hour to get onto a pool game…

Just wait until I move development code onto the proxy – real-time checking of the cache for keywords, comparing against various rules, and automatically blocking sites there and then. The more popular a site is (as word spreads of a game site that hasn’t been blocked), the higher the score, until the system blocks it. It’s nearly ready.

Game, set, and match.


Senior Content Development for Microsoft writing about Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS). Model train nerd. Occasionally I play video games.

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