Arbor DDoS Review

Forensics enable us to look at logs, to see anomalies, and they give us information we might not have about customers


What is our primary use case?

We're a managed service provider as well as an internet service provider. We use it to protect our core network from DDoS attacks, and by protecting our core network we can also protect our end customers.

We're in the process of migrating to the newest version, currently. We use the solution in our physical environment, but we also take advantage of their cloud offering.

How has it helped my organization?

Previously, we were vulnerable to DDoS attacks, and large-scale attacks could potentially take down parts of our network segments. With the Arbor product, that doesn't happen anymore.

What is most valuable?

I love the forensics. The forensics give us the ability to look at logs and to look for anomalies and give us traffic information about customers that we might not normally have. We can also use that to assist customers in troubleshooting issues that they might be having. The forensics is what I loved the most.

What needs improvement?

I struggle with where the product could improve because it's pretty great the way it is.

I would just say more granular reporting, down to our customer level, would be helpful. If we could somehow import customer information in their networks, it would be able to generate reports. It might actually be able to do that right now, and we have just never used it.

I've dealt with other solutions where I said, "I wish it did this," but it didn't. We have tried some other solutions that do what Arbor does and I would often go back to them and say, "Well, I want it to do this," because we already have that now with the Arbor solution. I've dealt with other vendors and I don't see things that they're doing that Arbor doesn't do.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using Arbor DDoS for eight years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It's very stable. Things do happen and we have had to open support tickets, but that touchpoint with Arbor is very low. There is not a lot of trouble that comes up with it. 

We don't necessarily need to update the firmware versions all the time, although they are available. Sometimes we have stayed with a  version that we were on because it was stable and it was secure. I've dealt with other vendors before where there are constant problems and their solution is, "Well, there's a new firmware version. Upgrade." We don't have those kinds of problems with Arbor.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

It's easily scalable. We could add on routers if we wanted to; we could add on more devices to handle more mitigations, or go to the cloud if necessary. If there was a large scale attack, we'd just use their scrubbing centers versus ours. It's very scalable.

It touches a relatively small part of our overall network: It touches our drain points to the internet. But it affects the entire network, which is quite complex. It's protecting our entire network. As our network expands, it can expand with us.

How are customer service and technical support?

The technical support is very good. We usually get answers right away. We can submit a ticket online or just give them a call and get a quick response.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We didn't have a solution before Arbor, but there was a period of time where we tried another solution. We did not find that solution to be adequate.

With Arbor, when we see DDoS attacks, it is fully mitigating the attacks. We've dealt with other ones where we didn't necessarily see that. The detection is very good. It's also very simple to use. Arbor is a single pane of glass, whereas with other solutions you might have a detection pane of glass and then have to go to a separate interface to deal with the mitigation. That single pane of glass makes it much simpler.

How was the initial setup?

I wasn't involved in the initial setup, but I was involved, mid-stream, when we brought in the mitigation side. We are currently replacing our aged infrastructure of Arbor products with a newer version. I'm tangentially involved with that.

The updating process is straightforward. They've done a good job of that. And the fact that we've already deployed it before means we can use the template of the previous deployment to set up the new deployment. So it is easy.

Our implementation strategy is the same, whether for the initial setup or for the updates. We're finding where the drains are on our network and set up the monitoring for those points. Then we create the mitigation side at specific data centers so we can route traffic to those devices and mitigate the traffic.

What was our ROI?

We have seen ROI for sure because uptime, as a service provider, is critical and the solution helps us maintain 100 percent uptime.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

There is room for improvement with the pricing. It is an expensive solution. The issue with the pricing is more the way it is built. Right now we're paying per router, and there's a limitation there. I would like to see bundle-pricing where there is an overall solution cost.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

I will periodically talk with other vendors, just to make sure Arbor is really the best solution for us.

What other advice do I have?

Work with Arbor. They have great people to help you make sure it's implemented correctly. And they also have a great training team to help you understand the solution and use it to its fullest advantages.

The biggest thing I have learned from using the solution is seeing all the different types of denial of service attacks that are out there. I have come to understand that they will come in waves and that certain types of customers are more prone to attack than others.

It also lets us understand traffic flows on our network, as far as the usual traffic goes. We can understand what our network looks like. What it looks like at 1:00 pm is very different then what it looks like at 3:00 am. The solution helps us understand that.

The users of Arbor DDoS in our company are only a handful of technicians. Our NOC and some of our security people, engineers, are in there, but it protects tens of thousands of customers for us. For deployment and maintenance of this solution we require two security engineers. They maintain the system and make any configuration changes, if necessary. They handle regular maintenance, if necessary, although it's pretty minimal.

I would rate this product as an eleven out of 10.

**Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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