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How to Set up Web Content Filtering for Mac using Hexnode MDM?

The Web content filtering feature for internet security in Hexnode MDM lets enterprises block access to specific websites. To configure web filters,

  1. Go to Policies tab from the Hexnode MDM dashboard.
  2. Continue with an existing policy or create a new one by clicking on New Policy
  3. Select Web Content Filtering from macOS > Security. Click Configure.
  4. Next, choose the Filter Type.

Filter Type 1: If you have chosen Blacklist as the filter type,

Blacklist Web URLs

Blacklisting a URL prevents the users from accessing any page on that website.

To blacklist web URLs,

Add.

Notes:

  • URLs should start with http://, ftp://, or https://.
  • You can blacklist multiple URLs by separating them using comma or semi-colon.

blacklisting a website with hexnode mdm
 
blacklisting a website with hexnode mdm

Blacklist by Content

The option Blacklist by Content is enabled by default for macOS devices and there is no provision to disable it. This option restricts the explicit content automatically. However, admin can allow the users to access those websites by whitelisting them.

This feature is useful when you may need to provide access to websites that are blocked based on content type. Since this is an automatically enabled restriction, you will have to provide access to these websites exclusively.

To whitelist an exceptional URL,

Enter the URLs in the text field and click Add.

Notes:

  • URLs should start with http://, ftp://, or https://.
  • You can blacklist multiple URLs by separating them using comma or semi-colon.

The below screenshots represent the result of Blacklist by Content.

blacklisting a website by content with hexnode mdm

Fig. 1: The main URL being blacklisted returns an error page.
 
blacklisting a website by content with hexnode mdm
Fig. 2: An exceptional whitelisted link in a blacklisted domain is given access.
 

Note:

Usually when you blacklist a URL in web filtering, it blocks the access to the website in the browsers as well as the corresponding app.

Filter type 2: If you have chosen Whitelist as the filter type,

Whitelist Web URLs

Whitelisting blocks the users from accessing any of the websites except the whitelisted ones.
To whitelist web URLs,

Enter the URLs in the text field and click Add.

Notes:

  • URLs should start with http://, ftp://, or https://.
  • You can blacklist multiple URLs by separating them using comma or semi-colon.

whitelisting a website with hexnode mdm

Associate the policy to target devices

If you have not saved the policy yet,

  1. Go to Policy Targets > +Add Devices. Alternatively, you can choose to associate the policy to either device groups, users, user groups or domains from the left pane.
  2. Choose the target device/devices.
  3. Click Ok. Click Save.

If you need to add more devices, click on +Add Devices again and repeat the above steps. This won’t affect your previous selections.

If you are on a page that lists the policies,

  1. Select a policy.
  2. From Manage drop-down, choose Associate Targets.
  3. Choose the target devices and click Associate.
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