'Instant' Web site connection vital for biz

Summary:Crucial for companies to ensure systems in place to provide fast and reliable access to Web sites, regardless of device platform, to meet rising expectations of customers, says Akamai CEO.

Businesses need to set a goal of making their Web sites "instant" and have 99.99 percent availability whether it is on the PC or mobile device or risk losing their customers to competitors, according to Akamai CEO.

"The slowest speed that the consumer expects is the fastest speed they have had one time," said Paul Sagan, Akamai president and CEO. He explained that if a customer has experienced "lightning-fast" Internet connection at the office, he will expect the same from his home PC as well as his mobile device. "A user doesn't care about spectrum, bandwidth or the browser, he just needs it to be that fast," he said.

"Frankly, the consumer's right...That's our goal, to help businesses make the Internet instant to the users," he said, adding that this was an important in keeping customers happy and retaining them.

"It's as if you say, 'I've put two locks on my back door.' But the bad guys are attacking with a tank."
--Paul Sagan
Akamai CEO

Benefits of software approach
Akamai, which specializes in Internet content delivery networks, described its own service as "air traffic control" for Internet traffic. Sagan described how its systems used sophisticated mathematics and algorithms to route Internet traffic.

He claimed that such a software approach was better than the usual method, which involved adding more hardware such as datacenter hosting and mirroring to cope. "More hardware usually means more points of potential failure and a software approach creates a uniquely stable platform," he said.

Sagan noted that while hardware was necessary to an extent, he believed more companies had the scope to turn to software. "We think that performance is really enhanced, guaranteed and secured through software, not just through more hardware."

Protecting DDOS attacks at source
The Akamai CEO is also eyeing business opportunities amid what he observed was a rising trend of cybercrime. He explained that the extent of the challenge companies faced today was that they were outgunned by cybercriminals.

"It's as if you say, 'I've put two locks on my back door.' But the bad guys are attacking with a tank," he said. "I don't care how many locks you put on your back door, if the bad guys are in front of your lawn with a tank, there's nothing you can do as they can blow the door open."

A better way to protect against such attacks is to stop the bad traffic from where it begins, he said, adding that companies should put more focus on such network solutions.

However, this should be on top of conventional firewalls as traffic monitoring does not track virus or malware, Sagan added.

Topics: Networking, Browser, CXO, Mobility

About

The only journalist in the team without a Western name, Yun Qing hails from the mountainy Malaysian state, Sabah. She currently covers the hardware and networking beats, as well as everything else that falls into her lap, at ZDNet Asia. Her RSS feed includes tech news sites and most of the Cheezburger network. She is also a cheapskate mas... Full Bio

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