On the Azure CDN section of the website, there is one sentence that stands out, and it goes something like this “Azure CDN is built on a highly-scalable, reverse-proxy architecture with sophisticated DDoS identification and mitigation technologies to protect you”. It can either mean one of two things: it’s really nothing, or behind the scenes, Microsoft is working furiously on building the most robust DDoS Mitigation Services platform on the planet. Microsoft isn’t one that boast too often, and with billions of cash in the bank, and nothing else better to do, it’s a safe bet to think it’s the latter.
If Microsoft invest $500M in their DDoS Mitigation platform, it would look something like a combination of Arbor Networks, Neustar and Prolexic. Why would Microsoft do this? Because it’s kind of their duty, since it’s MSFT customers that are getting hit the hardest in cyber theft, and in doing so MSFT raises their A game in the fight against the sophisticated cyber criminals. The impact to the CDN industry would be monumental, because once they do, then Amazon and Google follow. And once that happens, DDoS Mitigation ( L3/L4 protection) goes from a premium selling feature to a standard feature like DSA and FEO.
Therefore, pure-play CDNs must invest more heavily in their security feature set if they haven’t done so already, that goes way beyond basic DDoS mitigation services. On the bright side, companies like Distil Networks, Sitelock, Fireblade and Zenedge are ahead of the game. As far as Akamai is concerned, they need to do something fast, like this year. Let’s be blunt, the Prolexic acquisition is history now, and the $1B in cash just sitting in the coffers collecting dust, Akamai needs to move quickly and acquire a promising security start-up that will get them going strong for the next 5-7 years.