Jul 31, 2020

Whistic’s cybersecurity vendor management platform

Whistic
Cybersecurity
platform
vendors
William Smith
2 min
Whistic’s cybersecurity vendor management platform
Whistic is a Salt Lake City, Utah-based startup operating a vendor security platform to speed up trust development...

Whistic is a Salt Lake City, Utah-based startup operating a vendor security platform to speed up trust development.

The company’s platform is aimed at addressing the cybersecurity vulnerabilities inherent to a company’s relationship with its vendors, automating security reviews to give security teams information on vendor security and compliance.

It counts among its customers Okta, Qaultrics and Airbnb, with the latter’s Nate Jones, Security Program Manager, commenting: “Security reviews move much faster, especially when others are part of Whistic already so we can take advantage of the double-sided marketplace that the platform offers. Increasing the speed of reviews is important because it saves person hours, freeing time for us to work on other initiatives.”

The company’s Whistic Trust Catalog includes 14,000 company profiles, growing thirty times since it launched in 2019.

The company has raised a total of $16mn since its foundation in 2015. Its latest Series A, announced earlier this week, raised $12mn from lead investor Emergence, alongside Album VC.

In a press release, Nick Sorensen, Whistic CEO, said: “As more companies are realizing the importance of generating trust with their customers and validating trust with their third-parties, we are excited to offer a new, proactive approach to vendor security. The alliance with Emergence enables us to continue to accelerate our growth and develop new ways for companies to evaluate security postures and build trust.”

Whistic said it would use the funds to scale operations and increase its rate of hiring.

We’re excited to have Whistic join our family of market-defining companies at a time when quickly building and verifying trust is critical,” said Gordon Ritter, Emergence Founder and General Partner. “The value the platform delivers for customers is unparalleled and we are looking forward to creating a new fabric of trust that speeds up the pace of business globally.”

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Jun 8, 2021

Fastly's CDN Reportedly to Blame for Global Internet Outage

Technology
Fastly
servers
websites
Tilly Kenyon & Oliver James Fr...
3 min
Multiple outages have hit social media, government, and news websites across the globe

A huge outage has brought down a number of major websites around the world. Among those affected are gov.uk, Hulu, PayPal, Vimeo, and news outlets such as CNN, The Guardian, The New York Times, BBC, and Financial Times.

It is thought a glitch at Fastly ─ a popular CDN provider ─ is causing the worldwide issue. Fastly has confirmed it’s facing an outage on its status website but fails to specify a reason for the fault ─ only that the problem isn’t limited to a single data centre and, instead, is a “global CDN disruption” that is potentially affecting the company’s global network.

“We’re currently investigating potential impact to performance with our CDN services,” the firm said.

What is Fastly?

Fastly is a content delivery network (CDN) company that helps users view digital content more quickly. The company also provides security, video delivery, and so-called edge computing services. They use strategically distributed, highly performant POPs to help move data and applications closer to users and deliver up-to-date content quickly.

The firm has been proving increasingly popular among leading media websites. After going public on the New York Stock Exchange in 2019, shares rose exponentially in price, but after today’s outages, Fastly’s value has taken a sharp 5.21% fall and are currently trading at US$48.06. 

What are CDNs?

Content delivery networks (CDNs) are a web of small computers, or servers, that link together to collaborate as a single computer. CDNs improve the performance of internet-connected devices by placing these servers as close as possible to the people using those devices in different locations, creating hundreds of points of presence, otherwise known as POPs.

They help minimise delays in loading web page content by reducing the physical distance between the server and the user. This helps users around the world view the same high-quality content without slow loading times. 

Without a CDN, content origin servers must respond to every single end-user request. This results in significant traffic to the origin and subsequent load, thereby increasing the chances for origin failure if the traffic spikes are exceedingly high or if the load is persistent.

The Risk of CDNs

Over time, developers have attempted to protect users from the dangers of overreliance through the implementation of load balancing, DDoS (Denial of Service) protection, web application firewalls, and a myriad of other security features. 

Clearly, by the state of today’s major website outage, these measures aren’t enough. Evidently, CDNs present a risk factor that is widely underestimated ─ which needs to be rectified with haste. Content delivery networks have become a key part of the global infrastructure, and so it’s imperative that organisations start to figure out risk mitigation strategies to protect companies reliant on the interconnected service from further disruption and disarray. 

Over the coming days, both Technology Magazine and Data Centre Magazine will continue to provide updates on the current situation as developments are made.

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