New CPS firewall blocks alternative webmails


Due to a new CPS firewall, students are no longer able to access alternative web-mail, such as Gmail or Yahoo! from school.

Parker Sutherland

Gmail, and all other webmail services besides Columbia Public Schools own email are now blocked under the new Sonic Wall’s firewall system.

Media Specialist Dennis Murphy was shocked to hear that students could access any form of webmail before the change, but said he knew the old system had its flaws. Senior Samantha Peterson was even more shocked to hear that the new firewall blocked Gmail. She said it was a constant help for  projects, and the new loss would put a real dent in her schoolwork.
“It allows me to take all of my documents from home to school without even worrying about whether or not I have my flash drive, because I forget that all of the time,” Peterson said.  Now “I’m going to have to check one out from the media center, and that’s gonna be a hassle.”
Murphy said that emails are the number one cause of viruses to the system and that is the true reason alternate webmail services were blocked.
“If a virus is going to come in, the easiest way to come in is through an attachment, and we have no control over outside webmail,” Murphy said. “Security is the number one priority. Security from viruses or something that will harm our system.”
Murphy said he has yet to test out the new firewall, but that it has fewer holes than the old system which had a great ways to get around it.
By Parker Sutherland