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Using StackStorm to automate support for 20,000 servers

In the last three years, our network has supported hundreds of thousands of live-streamed sporting events, massive software downloads, billions of hours of streaming video content, and demands from thousands of web applications that all require real-time responsiveness and globally consistent performance. To support this massive growth, since 2015, our global network has grown to 71 Tbps, requiring thousands of new servers across our 135+ PoPs.

To keep up with the challenge of deploying a network footprint that is always growing and changing, our Operations teams developed an IT automation platform using StackStorm. It’s a giant leap forward that has transformed how our teams deploy, change, repair, and decommission server infrastructure, spanning more than 95% of the server population across our global network.

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Running a Multi-Tenant WAF at the Edge

Web Application Firewalls (WAFs) are a critical layer in modern web security, providing a website’s first line of defense against vulnerabilities. WAFs can be used to defend against and notify on attempted exploits, allowing for mitigations faster than organizations can patch vulnerable software. For a global CDN, this functionality must be implemented in a way that is sensitive to performance, providing response times on the order of milliseconds. When we first introduced a WAF engine to the VDMS stack three years ago, we selected the ModSecurity Rules Engine, which we found to be first-rate for individual WAF use cases. Furthermore, ModSecurity’s support of the OWASP Core Rule Set (CRS), powerful rule language, and API access to the HTTP traffic stream in real time offered significant flexibility.

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All Kinds of Connectivity

Our friends over at DE-CIX have recently published a white paper examining the benefits of using peering links, like those available via their Internet Exchange. In particular, the white paper highlights results from a study done by Adnan Ahmed and Zubair Shafiq at the University of Iowa along with our research team here at VDMS. The original study appeared in the 2017 proceedings of the IEEE International Conference on Networking Protocols (ICNP)

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Now Sponsoring Let's Encrypt

Verizon Digital Media Services is happy to announce our Silver sponsorship of Let’s Encrypt!

Let’s Encrypt has been instrumental in creating a more secure web for everyone and a key player in enabling the major browsers to deprecate plaintext HTTP. Encryption is increasingly important in providing people the privacy and confidentiality they expect in their communications.

We strongly believe in Let’s Encrypt’s mission and are extremely excited to sponsor the project which helps bring the promise of a more secure web to everyone.

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Meet Our Meetup Video Library Page

Did you know that Verizon Digital Media Services frequently hosts tech community meetups at our Playa Vista campus? Playa Vista, also dubbed “Silicon Beach” for its close proximity to the sand and its influx of innovative tech companies, has become a flourishing hub and home to over 500 tech companies.

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