The customer, a leading home improvement chain, helps buyers with home projects from start to finish. The store’s “customer service first” mantra is at the heart of every aspect of its business. Having a fast, responsive site and a great user experience has been the foundation for the company’s success. The customer leveraged Imperva Bot Management (formerly Distil Networks) to protect its website without impacting legitimate traffic.

The Challenge

E-commerce sites are perpetually scraped and abused by bad shopping bots. These automated visitors pillage customer accounts, skew conversion metrics, and commit fraud. Like all e-commerce providers, the customer’s leadership was worried about bots that can lead to slowdowns and downtimes and, ultimately, lost revenue.

“Multiple carts were simultaneously being loaded up with thousands of items, thereby causing infrastructure and software slowdowns. At the time, the application we were using to thwart cart bots would get exponentially slower as more items were added to a cart,” said the VP of Technology.

Competitors were using price-scraping bots to keep a watchful eye on the customer’s prices and inventory.

“Bot operators were probably trying to discover our shipping charges and fully-loaded costs including sales tax. Most likely, their goal was to collect data and sell it to a competitor. There will always be a way to learn what we sell our product for. But if we can make it burdensome, it lessens competitors’ ability to compete on pricing.”

The customer engaged with Imperva Bot Management for a solution that could replace the manual bot-blocking their team was doing on a daily basis, with a smarter, faster approach.

“Blocking a simple bot required a very manual process that included custom-written scripts to sort out the root problem. Then DevOps would go in and block the traffic at our load balancing solution using iRules and data groups to throw off or block traffic.”

The Solution

As the sophistication of bots increased, the business knew it was time to partner with a bot protection expert rather than build a system of their own. After an intensive selection process, Imperva Bot Management was chosen as the preferred vendor. After implementation, the customer was able to turn on a backend automation solution that thwarted malicious bots from attacking their site, and focus on the business of selling home improvement products.

The Results

Imperva Bot Management revealed that 30 percent of the business’s traffic came from bad bots. The customer was able to fine-tune their settings, reduce man-hours, and filter out bad bots that skewed them their analytics.

With Imperva Bot Management, the customer was able to save their company two to three man-days per month that were previously spent playing whack-a-mole against bot operators. They were able to put an immediate stop to entire classes of cybersecurity threats, including account takeovers, web scraping, online fraud, unauthorized vulnerability scans, and application denial of service.