Three Decades of Preparation: A Singular Network InfrastructureBy Cinthya Alaniz Salazar | Fri, 01/21/2022 - 13:26
Q: What makes Akamai a reputable and sought-after cybersecurity company?
A: Akamai was born at the end of the 1990s when a mathematics professor at MIT and his student realized that the internet was going to revolutionize everything, in both the private and public sectors. Moreover, they also foresaw that eventually the traffic from this migration was going to overwhelm the internet infrastructure if it remained in its current form. Foreseeing this problem, Akamai’s founders decided to create a network of servers to accelerate traffic. Seven years later, this solution remains central to the company’s security solutions.
Over the past two years, our unique market solution has become particularly relevant as cyberattacks proliferated in conjunction with the sudden confluence of billions of people in this digital space. Finally, what was suspected over 3 decades ago finally came to pass and Akamai was prepared. With its own network infrastructure, Akamai is helping clients improve the performance of their websites while identifying, protecting and mitigating cybersecurity attacks.
In addition to this, we also have the three main criteria that CIOs look for before hiring a third-party security solutions provider: immediacy, adaptability and market reputation. When CIOs begin to look for outside solutions, it is because they are looking to solve a specific problem that they know exists. Moreover, they are looking for a company that can provide more than one approach to their problem because although some are highly specialized in one area of cybersecurity, they lack literacy in other areas that the client may find essential. Lastly, they are looking for a digital print so that they can freely reference the company’s performance overtime.
With Akamai, clients know that they are allying with a company that has over a decade of accumulated experience and that has also grown in tandem with the internet. They can count on a diverse portfolio of solutions that can be adapted to their needs while receiving added value.
Q: How has the sudden acceleration of digitalization affected internet networks?
A: Just to provide some context, according to a joint study by the Inter-American Development Bank and the Organization of American States, in the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic, there where were multiple days in which a million people or more were joining the internet for the first time in countries across Latin America. As a company, we saw this phenomenon play out in real time, observing internet traffic increase in Mexico between 50 and 60 percent from one month to the next, Colombia by 120 percent and Central America with an incredible 1,000 percent increase. As these figures indicate, there was a sudden overnight surge in internet activity from new participants that required businesses to fortify their processing capacity.
Looking to meet this new demand, Akamai tripled its capacity in the first 12 months of the pandemic, growing from 40 terabits to 160 terabits of capacity throughout our network. No other provider can claim this capacity.
Q: Small and medium-sized businesses often lack the know-how and budget to address cybersecurity risks. What options do these market players have?
A: Not every business can address the challenges of cybersecurity in one go. Preparation in our current digital landscape is imperative because the likelihood of experiencing an attack is not a question of if, but when. Thankfully, trends in technology and thus cyberattacks eventually become predictable, thereby giving companies insight about what they should prioritize when building or strengthening their security infrastructure.
As a reference, small and medium-sized businesses can consult Akamai’s free quarterly studies, published as “The State of the Internet,” which detail exactly what is happening globally, regionally and even by individual country. Based on our observed trends, SMEs can make informed and precise business decisions about their security infrastructure without spending haphazardly. This is especially important for businesses with limited budgets that can only afford to fortify one aspect of their network, which is now an offered service by many providers, including Akamai.