Restricting Youtube to certain channels


You may want to allow access to certain Youtube Channels while blocking the rest. You can use a custom URL to allow based on the video URL ID. However this will mean adding each video ID when a new content is released - which could be very time consuming. (also some channels have hundreds of videos, do you really want to add each one manually?)

A better way is to allow the specific channel, as normally each channel is dedicated to a certain type of content. (ie learning about how cloud technologies work ect).

This guide will show you how simple it is to set up.

NOTE - SSL Inspection needs to be enabled for this to work and you will need to be licensed for Cloud App Controls.

1 - Youtube Channel ID:

You will need to find the Youtube Channel ID.

I used the following URL. ​​

Paste the channel URL, or a video from that channel to get the ID. In my case I pasted one from a channel I like (called Tolarian Community College) .

This then gave me the following results.

Copy the Channel ID, in this case its “​​UC7-hR5EfgpM6oHfiGDkxfMA”.

Another way to get the ID is to go onto the video and view source code and search for “channelId”.

2- Youtube Tenant:

On ZIA go to Administration > Tenant Profiles

Then add a new profile for Youtube and select “Youtube Channel ID” as a parameter, then add the Channel IDs.

3- Cloud Application Policy:

Now create a Cloud App policy. We will need x2, one to allow youtube for specific channels and one to block the rest (ie a default block all rule).

Go to Policy > URL & Cloud App Control > Cloud App Control Policy

Add an Allow rule to youtube and select the youtube tenant profile created.

Now add a block rule for Youtube. This will catch anything the first rule doesn’t.

Following is a summary of the configuration

Once enabled, users will only be able to view videos from the specific channel.

4- Testing:

Following is a screenshot of what happens when I watch a video from an authorised channel. (it’s pure Magic!!)

The following is what you see when you go to a channel that is NOT authorised.


Great tip.

Now I’m looking for one to block for home usage. :blush: