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DeviceLock« controls USB in Christ's Hospital

The client

Christ's Hospital is an independent boarding school for up to 850 boys and girls, aged 11-18. It provides a first class education for children from all walks of life, particularly those whose families have social, financial or other need.

Currently, 97% of pupils receive bursary support, more than any other independent boarding school. The majority of children come from the south-east and inner London Boroughs.

The School is supported by a Charitable Foundation; one of the largest in the UK. It is the proceeds of the endowment and other investments over the centuries, along with the generosity of donors and fundraising initiatives that enables Christ's Hospital to remain the last truly charitable public school.

Originally founded in the City of London by Edward VI for poor children, Christ's Hospital moved to its purpose-built premises near Horsham in 1902. Today, the School and its Charitable Foundation are major contributors to the local economy, employing around 450 staff and sharing its 500-seat Theatre and Health and Fitness Club with the local community.

The need

In a School of almost 850 full-time boarders who have access to a wide range of programmes for educational purposes day and night, it is essential the systems are protected against security breaches, often caused by a simple desire to explore the network or download programs. A particular problem is the prevalence of personal consumer electronics, such as mobile phones, cameras, and music devices, all of which present themselves as USB devices, and in particular, as USB file stores. Pupils were able to introduce programmes, photographs and music to the network. These files pose a threat to the integrity of the systems, or affect the amount of disk space available for academic work.

The solution

Christĺs Hospital had been searching for a USB management tool for some time, and evaluated those that were on the market at the time. DeviceLock« was the most cost-effective of those evaluated.

DeviceLock« has proved to be very flexible in the devices that can be permitted or denied access to a PC, and can be configured to allow generic devices, such a scientific data loggers without having to configure each PC individually. DeviceLock« is deployed as part of a system image and the configuration is managed through Active Directory Group Policies.

Mike Harrod, Director of IT comments "DeviceLock has brought order to an environment where over 850 users were able to access files of potentially large sizes and store them on the file servers. Until we purchased DeviceLock, we had no knowledge within the IT Department of the scale of this problem or any way to control it except by disabling USB totally. With the advent of newer PCs with only USB mice and keyboards, this was clearly not a sustainable situation."

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