US Open used Web filtering to prevent online gambling

USTA took security measure to retain "squeaky clean" image

The US Open tennis tournament provides network access for the players, guests and media, but this past summer the association running the event took an extra security step to make sure access wasn't too open.

"We didn't want people at the event to have access to gambling sites," says Larry Bonfante, CIO of the US Tennis Association (USTA), about the decision to add Web-filtering to the network supporting the event at the Billie Jean Tennis Center at Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, in New York.

Bonfante is proud the sport is considered "above board" and "squeaky clean," and filtering out access to gambling sites is a proactive step taken to head off any trouble, he says.

More than a year ago, there were rumblings that a low-seeded tennis player might have thrown a match; that rumor had USTA management and its IT department mulling the issue of gambling. With more than 21,000 individuals credentialed to be at the US Open -- with secure network access available to them in addition to their issued site credentials -- the question was whether it would be a good step to prevent access to online gambling in general.

"Even if it's just the perception, we just didn't want people to have access to known gambling sites, so we bolted it down," Bonfante says. The USTA did that using St. Bernard Software's iPrism Web filter, which the association chose for its ease of installation and flexibility in reporting, using it at both the US Open and at USTA headquarters.

This year, with Web-filtering installed at the tennis tournament, the USTA determined there were 17,000 attempts to reach online gambling sites during the course of the two-week event. "What the rationale there was for all this, we don't know," Bonfante says.

Around the world, particularly in Europe and Asia, there may be different legal acceptance of online gambling, Bonfante says. But as far as the USTA is concerned, blocking online gambling sites has simply become a "business requirement" to keep the tennis event, which this year was attended by 720,000 people in all, in good showing.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags internet filtering

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Ellen Messmer

Network World
Show Comments

Brand Post

Bitdefender 2019

Taking cybersecurity to the highest level and order now for a special discount on the world’s most awarded and trusted cybersecurity. Be aware without a care!

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?