The Silicon Review
While cybersecurity is a genuine concern in today’s internet age, what most users find annoying is the incessant stream of spam emails that flood people’s inboxes. While antiviruses protect against various types of malicious attacks, there is nothing specifically available for protection against spam mails. Taking it up as a challenge, the founder of a company named Cloudflare set out to build a system that allowed anyone with a website to track how spammers harvested email addresses. Their project soon became a hit as thousands of websites, from more than 185 countries, signed up to participate in it. While all the users loved the system’s ability to track online malicious behavior, they had one repeated request: don’t just track the bad guys, stop them.
That’s where the idea for Cloudflare was conceived.
The founders spent months refining the Cloudflare prototype. They felt that Cloudflare solved a real need and set out to take it to the next level. In November of 2009, they closed its Series A financing with Ray Rothrock, from Venrock, and Carl Ledbetter, from Pelion Venture Partners.
Here are some of Cloudfare’s solutions:
Accelerate Internet Applications
Consumers expect web pages to load quickly. Slow page load times can lead to high bounce rates, page abandonment, and lower conversion rates. Web pages are becoming increasingly complex and users are more globally dispersed; which degrades the user experience. Cloudflare brings content closer to your users by caching static web content on its network. Image files can be optimized to significantly improve load times, and dynamic content can be compressed and routed on the fastest, least congested path to the end-user.
Accelerate Mobile Experiences
Mobile visitors expect fast, rich online experiences. Mobile device and cellular network limitations can degrade a user’s mobile experience, resulting in lower conversions, loss of revenue, and degraded brand perception.
Mobile applications and web pages require the speed and scale of a global network to combat mobile-induced latencies and globally dispersed users with poor connectivity. Cloudflare optimizes image files for mobile consumption and provides developers with tools to improve native mobile app performance on challenging networks.
Ensure Application Availability
Users expect their mission-critical applications to always be online and available. Internet applications deployed on a global scale are highly susceptible to outages or downtime due to spikes in traffic, high network latency or server outages at the origin. Cloudflare improves application availability by monitoring network latency and server health at the origin, identifying the best resource from which to serve user requests for dynamic content.
Advanced DDoS Attack Protection
Denial of Service attacks continues to grow in sophistication and force: more distributed greater volumes of traffic and encroaching on the application layer. A successful attack increases unnecessary costs on your infrastructure and IT/security staff. More importantly, it hurts your revenue, customer satisfaction, and brand.
Cloudflare’s network capacity is 15x bigger than the largest DDoS attack ever recorded. With 30 Tbps of capacity, it can handle any modern distributed attack, including those targeting DNS infrastructure. With every new property, Cloudflare’s network becomes smarter. Cloudflare’s IP reputation database identifies and blocks new and evolving threats across all 18 million properties on the network.
Eliminate security induced latencies by integrating with Cloudflare’s included performance services, including CDN, smart routing, website optimizations, and the latest web standards.
Data Breach Prevention
A data compromise can result in the leak of sensitive customer information, such as credit cards, passwords, and other personally identifiable information (PII), from an application's data store. Attackers often use several attack vectors when attempting to compromise customer data, such as DNS spoofing, snooping of data in transit, brute force login attempts, or malicious payload exploits.
The global cost of a data breach on average, per lost or stolen record, is $141 in 2017, and the average total cost of a data breach in the US is $3.62 million. With heightened scrutiny by governments and media, companies are facing severe repercussions from even the smallest data compromise. Business impacts include lost customers and revenues, degraded trust, damaged brand, or regulatory penalties.
Websites and applications require the resilience and intelligence of a scalable network to combat the most sophisticated and newest attacks. Protecting against threats should not degrade performance caused by security induced latencies, and security services must be easy to configure to eliminate misconfigurations, which introduce new vulnerabilities.
Cloudfare’s DNSSEC verifies DNS records using cryptographic signatures. By checking the signature associated with a record, DNS resolvers can verify that the requested information comes from its authoritative name server and not a man-in-the-middle attacker. Automatically filter out illegitimate traffic targeting the application layer through web application firewall (WAF) rulesets, including GET and POST-based HTTP requests. Enable pre-built rulesets such as OWASP Top 10 and Cloudflare application-specific. Build rulesets to specify types of traffic to block, challenge, or let through.