NTT TechnoCross Corporation, a subsidiary of telecommunications service provider Nippon Telegraph and Telephone (NTT), delivers advanced IT services including security, cloud and network technology to its customers.
With its website a central source of information for its digital marketing efforts, its uninterrupted operation is a primary goal for the ops team. When NTT TechnoCross had to renew its website, it looked for a solution that would protect the site and keep it available for its customers.
Business and Technical Challenge
The NTT TechnoCross website came up for renewal in mid-2014. Concurrently the team was aware of a growing demand for cloud computing from its customers. Since one of its core offerings is to provide technical support for its customers’ cloud computing and security, NTT TechnoCross looked first to cloud-based services for its own renewed site.
Ryo Sakamoto, section manager in charge of sales in the marketing and sales department of NTT TechnoCross, shared the thinking behind those decisions.
“Reliably defending the website against global-scale threats that evolve on a daily basis, such as DDoS attacks, became essentially impossible under in-house operation. There was also the major burden of working day-by-day through the chain of investigation, analysis, testing, analysis of results, full-scale response and reporting of results, in order to deal with these threats. Of even greater concern was the risk of overlooking a threat itself because of an insufficient response.”
The team also wanted to switch from in-house operations to a third-party security service during the renewal. At the time, the two ops staff in charge of the website were working at full capacity. Their days were spent researching information and triangulating more data from the in-house security department to investigate attacks and then deploy countermeasures. All the while they had to continue updating content on the site.
Technical and Business Requirements
The NTT TechnoCross team listed the top requirements for the winning solution:
- A global track record of adoption
- Proven operational load reduction
- Availability and stable operations
- Ease of implementation
- Usage not as an asset but as a service
- Monthly payable usage fees
The team also faced a very tight schedule. The migration to the new system was to be completed close to two months out. According to Sakamoto ease of implementation rose to the top of the list as an important requirement.
Yusuke Takahashi, business manager, solutions department who contributed to the selection process added that IPv6 compatibility was another key requirement for NTT’s laboratories and websites.
Finally, the team was looking for prompt incidence response in the case of an event and the ability to write and use custom policies from the service.
Making the Decision
The team at NTT TechnoCross chose Imperva Incapsula to protect their website from DDoS attacks and web application attacks. After evaluating other solutions, NTT TechnoCross found that Incapsula was the only cloud-based WAF that met its requirements of global adoption experience, availability, ease of implementation and reduction of operational load.
At the end of 2014, the company made the decision to adopt Incapsula and completed the implementation in just a month and a half. It launched practical application in March 2015 together with the website renewal.
Once services were integrated with NTT TechnoCross, Sakamoto noticed improved website stability and a reduction in operation load. “The ability to achieve website stability without having to worry about threats has proven to be a huge win,” he said. Plus, eliminating operational expenses allowed NTT to allocate staff and resources more efficiently.
NTT TechnoCross was also pleased at the Imperva team’s response time, which helps them answer questions from the other companies in the group.
“I don’t think there is any other service that has been welcomed by our engineers as much as Incapsula,” added Takahashi. “It’s extremely hands-off for users too, so it delivers merits for both engineers and users.”
NTT TechnoCross has successfully protected its website from cyber threats by using Incapsula for a number of years. The company focuses its efforts now on expanding its web presence. You can read the full case study here.