Case Study

The Challenge

Purplebricks is the fastest growing estate agency in the UK. By combining people with technology, Purplebricks empowers customers by giving them complete control of their sale. Customers can interact with Purplebricks online - through their computer or mobile phone - or in-person, with Local Property Experts and via a team of Central Property Experts based at its head office in Solihull. Purplebricks’ multichannel 24/7 business model offers transparency and convenience, saving their customers money.

“Offering great customer service is at the heart of our business and we really care about the feedback we get from our customers,” says David Kavanagh, CTO at Purplebricks. ”We need to ensure customers can always access our website, 24/7. That means preventing distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks that might take us offline and also having a top notch domain name system (DNS) service to ensure our web presence and guarantee a smooth navigation experience for users.”

Since their inception in 2014, Purplebricks has been expanding across the UK and is also launching nationwide in Australia. When the company opens in each new location, it invests heavily in TV advertising. In some regions, this publicity has a real-time effect on website visits, causing dramatic peaks in traffic.

The Solution

Like many multichannel businesses, Purplebricks initially used their cloud vendor’s DNS to manage and control its web traffic, but this generic solution didn’t offer DDoS protection and created other challenges around flexibility and degrees of usability.

Purplebricks decided to compare the marketplace for DNS services to see if it could improve upon its incumbent supplier’s performance. They also wanted to find a more robust DDoS mitigation service in order to pre-empt the possibility of attacks and minimize the possibility of downtime.

Purplebricks chose Neustar for a number of reasons, as David Kavanagh explains: “Neustar ticked a number of boxes in terms of speed of network, reputation and training history. In addition to our in-house tests and trial period where everything went well, we also commissioned some metrics on Neustar’s results from an independent assessment company and they were very healthy.”

The Results

Neustar UltraDNS and SiteProtect provides Purplebricks with the flexibility to monitor and manage website traffic by handling the peaks and troughs of visitors who suddenly visit their website. “The Neustar DNS solution is more nuanced and we are able to configure it with more detail than other DNS products on the market,” said Kavanagh.

“The fact that Neustar is also a leader in DDoS mitigation is a real bonus as we wanted to be proactive about protection, and think upfront about how best to go about it,” he concluded.

“When you are a business that experiences explosive growth, you need to have strategies and plans in place to handle the huge amount of traffic that will come your way as well as the increased potential for being a target of cybercrime, which comes with having a raised profile,” Kavanagh said. “We trust Neustar to help us with both these important elements. It is a company of engineers and they understand what they do, packaged with great customer service. We have not experienced any technical issues so far.”

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