Akamai enhances cloud delivery platform to mitigate threats

17 April 2018 | Jason McGee-Abe


Akamai Technologies has made significant enhancements designed to improve website, app, and network security without compromising the performance of digital applications.

With these additions, Akamai’s cloud delivery platform is architected to serve as a crucial foundation for digital business, with security and agile deployment capabilities supporting digital transformation, next-generation network architectures, and increasingly popular DevOps workflows.

“Akamai has spent the last twenty years building and improving the largest, most reliable cloud delivery infrastructure on the market,” said Ashutosh Kulkarni, senior vice president and general manager, web security and performance at Akamai.

“We understand that our customers are operating in an increasingly competitive, fast-moving digital environment. To help them drive differentiation and value with their customers, the Akamai platform is providing automation, tools and technology to securely move more applications to the cloud, streamline the delivery of seamless web and mobile experiences, and improve developer agility without compromising security or quality across hybrid environments.”

Akamai says that as modern businesses are increasingly operating in a digital environment full of uncertainty and risks, especially in the face of threats operating at a scale never seen before, such as the WannaCry and Petya Botnets, it’s crucial that business networks are able to be secure, reliable and competent in this environment. This has been a big influence on making several significant enhancements to its network to help enterprises evolve their overarching network architecture.

New enhancements to combat security risks and bots

As businesses move their digital operations to the cloud, systems are exposed to the risk of DDoS attacks, application-level attacks, and the increasing number of threats posed by bots. Akamai’s 2017 State of the Internet Security Report found that more than 40% of online login attempts are malicious, and the Ponemon Institute reports breaches based on this attack vector can, on average, cost a digital business $60 million a year.

New enhancements to the Akamai platform are designed to manage the growing challenge posed by bots and mitigate the threats posed by credential abuse. Akamai Bot Manager has added capabilities to protect apps and APIs, including a client SDK for mobile applications. For larger botnets that threaten to overwhelm organisations’ apps and infrastructure through volumetric DDoS attacks, Akamai is deploying additional capacity to its scrubbing centres to mitigate the ever-growing volume of DDoS attacks that have been threatening digital businesses. 

Secure access in a Zero Trust era

As the traditional corporate security perimeter dissolves and enterprise applications move to the cloud, secure unified access and single sign-on have become an imperative. Akamai’s Enterprise Application Access is designed to enable IT and security teams to move towards a Zero Trust security architecture, while simplifying secure access and reducing the attack surface associated with cloud migration, the dissolving corporate perimeter, and an increasingly mobile workforce.

DevSecOps

Additional new platform features address the need for infusing security into DevOps, as more enterprises work to find that balance between accelerated development cycles and the mindset that “security is everybody's responsibility”. Akamai has added support for scripting to automate application security using its flagship web application firewall, Kona Site Defender, as well as improved management and versioning support for API protection. In addition, the Akamai API Gateway provides an integrated solution architected to accelerate, secure, and manage APIs, including the ability to expose, authenticate, and manage access to APIs to maximise revenue and prevent misuse and abuse.

Akamai continues to focus on bringing the quality, performance and reliability of traditional broadcast television to the internet, while protecting pay-TV and OTT service providers, broadcasters and consumers from a growing number of cyber threats. “Building trust is at the core of Akamai’s offerings. Not only trust that we are delivering the highest possible performance for web or media content, but also that the content is secure against theft and disruption,” said Rick McConnell, president and general manager, web division at Akamai. “As our customers digitally transform their businesses and meet the demands of their users for rich, high-quality content, Akamai is committed to helping them deliver an exceptional and secure experience.”