In today's digital landscape, ensuring the security of web applications and APIs is paramount. The journey to find the right security solution can be filled with challenges and choices. In this blog post, we'll dive into the experience of Rob Davies, VP of Engineering and Lead Architect at Revenera, as he navigates the path from identifying the need for enhanced API security to making a decision, implementing the solution, and reaping the benefits. Rob's journey with Wallarm sheds light on the importance of selecting the right partner for web app and API security.
- Wallarm does what it says on the tin!
- Revenera went to a fully rearchitected and fully secured offering.
- Wallarm was superior to other options tested, including AWS.
- Wallarm supported all API protocols, which was not available from other vendors.
- Deployment & implementation and ongoing support is fantastic.
- 9.8 / 10 Rating – would highly recommend.
The Need: Identifying the Problem and the "Was" Condition
Revenera was faced with the task of moving their operations, their main solution for monetizing SaaS products and devices, from their aging Santa Clara data center to AWS. The motivation behind this move was twofold: to leverage AWS's scalability and high availability and to modernize their existing features and functionality.
Rob recognized early on that a "secure front door" in order to better manage traffic was crucial. With multiple entry points into their applications and an outdated setup, tracking traffic and ensuring security was becoming increasingly complex. The "was" condition was a scenario where they had no dedicated security solution in place and were relying solely on managing security of individual components manually, a less-than-ideal approach.
We were looking at not only introducing one central entryway with an API Gateway, but also introducing API Security to provide better security for FlexNet Operations. We've made the investment in Wallarm API Security because we believe it’s the best there is on the market and it fits our needs really well.Rob Davies, VP of Engineering and Lead Architect at Revenera
The Decision: Choosing Wallarm as the Solution
The journey took a decisive turn when Rob learned about Wallarm through their new API gateway provider, Kong. [Read about Revenera’s early assessment in Integrating API Security and WAF into K8s Kong API Gateway.] They explored various vendors, including Wallarm, evaluating their ability to filter out bad traffic effectively. Wallarm stood out as the best at this task, significantly reducing the volume of bad API calls. Rob and his team recognized that Wallarm offered the most fitting off-the-shelf solution for their security needs. This choice aligned perfectly with their desire for a seamless and comprehensive API security solution.
Our focus was on finding an off-the-shelf solution, and Wallarm provided the best solution we could find – especially since we utilize several different technologies like SOAP, REST and GraphQL at the same time, which Wallarm supports quite nicely.Rob Davies, VP of Engineering and Lead Architect at Revenera
Implementation: After-Sales Support and Setting Up for Success
With the decision made, the next step was implementation. Rob highlighted the exceptional after-sales support provided by Wallarm. They encountered a few deployment issues but found Wallarm's support team to be highly responsive. In addition to support, Wallarm offered expert guidance and technical overviews, which included detailed diagrams, to facilitate a smooth implementation process. This level of support and professionalism contributed to a successful deployment.
I would give Wallarm a 9.8 out of 10, if not a 10 itself. One of the things we got from the services team at Wallarm when we were doing initial implementation was advice on the best way to do things. And they gave us a lot of good advice. But it wasn't just advice: they gave us a good technical overview; they gave us diagrams. So, they translated what we had told them into a pictorial representation, which they gave back to us, which was great. We don't see that from too many partners or vendors going to that level of detail. And I think in all our interactions since – if it's support or any other aspect of Wallarm – have been very professional, very friendly, and very responsive, which you don't get that from many vendors or partners either.Rob Davies, VP of Engineering and Lead Architect at Revenera
Outcomes: Improvements and Business Benefits
The implementation of Wallarm brought about notable improvements and business benefits. One significant outcome was the substantial reduction in bad API calls, with approximately 250,000 bad API calls being filtered out monthly. This relieved the strain on Revenera's systems, as Wallarm efficiently handled security at the entry point.
Furthermore, the enhanced security solution allowed Revenera to increase rate limits for their services without the need for a significant increase in backend resources. This improved service capacity and demonstrated their commitment to security to their end-users. Wallarm's security features also provided Revenera with a solid security story to share with their customers, instilling trust and confidence in their services.
Using Wallarm, a lot less bad traffic comes through to our systems, which reduces the load on them. We can easily see how much bad traffic Wallarm is filtering out, which also highlights how much we were letting go directly through to our applications before.Rob Davies, VP of Engineering and Lead Architect at Revenera
Satisfaction: Near Perfect Experience
When assessing their overall satisfaction with Wallarm, Rob rated the experience close to a perfect 10, noting that Wallarm delivered on its promises. He was pleasantly surprised that Wallarm exceeded expectations, as it performed seamlessly with low latency, delivering precisely what was advertised. The professionalism, friendliness, and responsiveness of Wallarm's team further solidified their satisfaction.
We view Wallarm very much as a partner. We still go back to Wallarm from time to time to ask for recommendations, best practices, et cetera – and we get very good support. I would absolutely recommend Wallarm, in a heartbeat. They do what they say on the tin – meaning what they say they can do, they really do.Rob Davies, VP of Engineering and Lead Architect at Revenera
Parting Thoughts: Lessons Learned and Future Needs
Rob's journey with Wallarm holds valuable lessons for organizations seeking web app and API security solutions. The key takeaway is the importance of thorough vendor selection, considering different options, and assessing their profiles. Sometimes the biggest vendors may not be the most innovative or efficient choice, as Revenera discovered.
As for future needs, Revenera's current solution provides confidence for the next five years at least. With Kong and Wallarm working seamlessly together, they have established a secure entry point for their applications. Rob emphasizes that once a secure front door is in place, there may be no immediate need for additional changes.
Once you've got a front door which works and it's secure, I don't think there's any need to do anything else to it really. For the most part, once Wallarm is in and operating, we can just let it run – which is great. We don't have to touch it hardly ever.Rob Davies, VP of Engineering and Lead Architect at Revenera
In conclusion, Rob's journey with Wallarm showcases the significance of selecting the right partner for web app and API security. By identifying the need, making a well-informed decision, implementing the solution effectively, and reaping the benefits, Revenera has fortified its security posture and set the stage for future success. The lessons learned from their experience can guide other organizations on their path to achieving robust API security.
In the ever-evolving landscape of web app and API security, it's crucial to have a trusted partner like Wallarm to safeguard your digital assets. If you're facing similar challenges, consider following in Revenera's footsteps and exploring the possibilities that the right security solution can offer.