Sophos Web Appliance: Search term alerts do not work for HTTPS Google search

  • Article ID: 120279
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  • Updated: 22 Oct 2015


When users search for restricted keywords using a secure (HTTPS) search engine, search term alerts are not sent to the admin.  Also, the activity is not logged in the Web Appliance reports.  Eg. 'Reports | Users | Users By Search Queries'

First seen in
Sophos Web Appliance WS1100


Logging for HTTPS transactions is not configured to show the complete URL.  To analyze search terms, the web appliance must be able to see the complete URL within the HTTPS traffic.

What To Do

In order for search term alerts to work with SSL search engines, HTTPS scanning must be enabled.  

  1. Go to 'Configuration | Global Policy | HTTPS Scanning'
  2. Turn HTTPS Scanning 'ON'
  3. Click 'Apply'

Note - When using HTTPS Scanning it is important to trust the Sophos generated Certificate Authority in your users' browser.

Also, the appliance must be configured to show the complete URL for HTTPS transactions.  When the user visits a HTTPS site this will show the complete, decrypted HTTPS url in your logging and reports.

  1. Go to 'Configuration | Global Policy | HTTPS Scanning'
  2. Select the 'Log complete URLs for HTTPS transactions' option

If you need more information or guidance, then please contact technical support.

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