Ultius leverages Cloudflare to protect and secure their freelance writing marketplace.
Ultius is an online platform that connects consumers with talented freelance writers for writing, editing, and business document preparation services. “I measure the success of the business based on how well we are executing the vision of the company,” Boban Dedovic, CEO of Ultius, noted, “which is to be the trusted provider of content solutions for consumers around the world. I want the company to offer its services to as many people in as many locales as possible.”
Challenges Ultius Faces: DDoS Attack Mitigation and Application Security & Performance “We initially came to Cloudflare because we suffered from DDoS threats and wanted global, stable infrastructure that would be rock-solid as we scaled to new regions,” Dedovic explained. DDoS attacks aimed at Ultius could make their site slow, unresponsive, or entirely unavailable for their users, resulting in a poor user experience, loss of brand credibility, and ultimately lost revenue.
Furthermore, these attacks often serve as distractions during attempts at data theft, so Ulitius was in search of a vendor to further bolster the security of their application and internal facing resources—as with any web marketplace, a compromise of any user data would be a headache for the company and compromise platform trust.
In addition to protecting and securing the application, Ultius was looking to ensure it could scale quickly and globally, while maintaining a universal experience for its users. This meant finding a bullet-proof managed DNS provider as well as a CDN to quickly deliver content to users regardless of end location.
Ultius' Solution: A High-Performing, Featured Network Built for Security & Stability “I looked at other solutions before Cloudflare,” Dedovic noted, “but found it to be the most robust, easy-to-use offering. While our existing infrastructure capped our DDoS protection at 5GB/s, Cloudflare offers Unmetered DDoS mitigation that would protect us regardless of attack size.”
“When we suffered downtime we immediately calculated a cost-per-hour of that downtime, and then we calculated how often that would happen in a given year. Without getting into specific numbers, the Cloudflare decision certainly had a good return on investment comparing the cost of the service to the cost of our service being offline. Cloudflare’s rate limiting and WAF have helped us block 20 times more threats aimed at our infrastructure than our previous solution. With these tools, Cloudflare helps us foster our commitment to our customers’ trust and safety.”
When Cloudflare released Access, Ultius was eager to try the new tool seeing it as a potential solution to keep their internal resources secure from outside intrusion. “Cloudflare Access helps us really tighten our web properties by adding a 2nd level of authentication to important data entry-points,” Dedovic related. “We use it to secure all entry-points to resources that hold sensitive data,” related Dedovic. “It’s a powerful and easy-to-use solution for protecting our internal resources. Plus, I was able to set it up in 20 minutes without any technical changes required. My team loves that we did away with the slow, painful VPN we previously used."
Ultius now also leverages Cloudflare’s best-in-class managed DNS, CDN, and Argo Smart Routing services, which combine to decrease Time-to-First-Byte by over 50% and improve the performance of the application as a whole by over 60%. Dedovic concluded, “A faster website helps us deliver our service better for our clients, prospective clients, writers, and staff. Adding Cloudflare’s performance services to our application directly improved our conversion rate and site availability.”