Akamai Protects 5miles Against Online Attacks to Support Its Rapid Business Expansion

"Akamai helped 5miles implement network security architecture in two months. With Akamai, we could identify potential threats proactively and protect ourselves from online attacks in a timely fashion. The security of our website and mobile application has now improved dramatically,"

Hui Zhang , Engineer , 5miles

The Situation

5miles makes it fun and easy to buy and sell items and services with a mobile phone. Snap a photo, enter a text or voice description, and you can start selling to thousands of potential buyers in seconds. 5miles leverages users’ phone GPS location to reach a multitude of buyers and sellers in the area. Launched in 2014, 5miles has been downloaded in more than 100 countries, with a strong base of customers in the United States.

The Challenge

5miles was founded to create a simple and safe environment where buyers and sellers can easily trade goods from their mobile devices. The challenge facing 5miles were security vulnerabilities specific to mobile platforms, such as the theft of users’ login data. The 5miles application is delivered via mobile networks to mobile devices, which has a high dependence on web performance and network security. The 5miles system was incapable of distinguishing malicious bots from innocuous ones, and there was also the SQL injection risk if 5miles users lost mobile phones, exposing their login credentials.

The Goals

5miles needed to satisfy two requirements to reach its goals:

  • Identify threats and assess vulnerabilities ─ 5miles needed a comprehensive solution to identify security risk and threats.
  • Eliminate security risks without compromising the user experience ─ 5miles wanted an agile and sound Cloud Security solution to help protect their products and services from vulnerabilities and threats in real-time, without compromising on the user experience.

Reason for Selection

Stable platform and mobile friendly

The globally-distributed and highly-scalable Akamai Intelligent Platform™ sees a lot of traffic from around the world, and it is designed to monitor and help mitigate tens or even hundreds of Gbps of DDoS attacks. “We selected Akamai because of its recognition in the industry and our previous experience with Akamai products and services. Akamai's solutions also help us ensure fast, reliable performance for our mobile application," explained Hui Zhang.

Comprehensive security solutions

After implementing Akamai Cloud Security Solutions, 5miles was protected from all types of DDoS, web application attacks and direct-to-origin attacks. "Akamai offers comprehensive network security solutions covering a company from the third, fourth to the seventh layer, providing a solid foundation for our cloud business," explained Mr. Zhang.

Reliable and around-the-clock security protection

With a collection of pre-defined, configurable application-layer firewall rules, Akamai Cloud Security Solutions helped 5miles address various types of security risks and attacks. Additionally, 5miles had access to Akamai’s 24x7 global Security Intelligence Response Team (SIRT) for security support and scheduled reviews to address new and emerging web application attacks. Mr. Zhang added, "Our business reaches across the world and spans all time zones. Since we don’t have our own security expert team, Akamai’s round-the-clock security services and the professional services team is of significant help to our team."

About 5miles

5miles is a hyper-local mobile marketplace app, one of the nation's fastest-growing online shopping ventures in only a year of operation. It is the first app of its kind to include services, housing and jobs, in addition to second-hand trading. Putting a premium on safety and security, 5miles does not permit personal information on an item description, offering instead a proprietary messaging system that keeps contact information private. For more information, visit 5milesapp.com.

About Akamai

Akamai secures and delivers digital experiences for the world’s largest companies. Akamai’s intelligent edge platform surrounds everything, from the enterprise to the cloud, so customers and their businesses can be fast, smart, and secure. Top brands globally rely on Akamai to help them realize competitive advantage through agile solutions that extend the power of their multi-cloud architectures. Akamai keeps decisions, apps, and experiences closer to users than anyone — and attacks and threats far away. Akamai’s portfolio of edge security, web and mobile performance, enterprise access, and video delivery solutions is supported by unmatched customer service, analytics, and 24/7/365 monitoring. To learn why the world’s top brands trust Akamai, visit www.akamai.com, blogs.akamai.com, or @Akamai on Twitter. You can find our global contact information at www.akamai.com/locations.