LeaseWeb

Protecting Your Business From Increasingly Sophisticated Cyberattacks

cyberattacksWhether you’re leading a Fortune 500 company or your own small business, cybersecurity must be a fundamental business objective. Several high-profile cyberattacks in the first half of 2017 have affected organizations of all sizes all over the world, and these attacks are only going to become more common and more sophisticated.

As a business leader, it’s important to understand that the threat is constant. Even if you’ve never experienced an attack, your servers are perpetually being scanned by hackers for vulnerabilities — and the damage can be fatal to your business. A cyberattack can result in the loss of critical information, putting the reputation of your brand at stake.

If you suffer a cyberattack and are able to react quickly, it’s certainly possible to mitigate the damage to your business and your customers, though containing an attack can get tremendously expensive. If you have a plan in place, however, you can save yourself a lot of time and money — and protect the future of your business.

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The Secret to Shorter Load Times on E-Commerce Sites

shorter load timesE-commerce sales have increased dramatically over the past few years, and the growth continues to accelerate. Between 2015 and 2016, online sales increased almost 16 percent, and e-commerce is expected to continue to grow at rates above 20 percent. For online sellers and developers of e-commerce sites, this means the market will only become more competitive, and shorter load times will become more important.

 

Alongside increased sales, internet speeds continue to rise — and so do consumer expectations for online experiences. A measly four-second wait time causes 25 percent of site visitors to abandon a page, and for a site as large as Amazon, a single second of slowdown could cost $1.6 billion. Those numbers are nothing to sneeze at.

 

If your competitors’ sites load faster than yours, you could see your revenue start shifting to them. The effect is multiplied the longer you ignore your slow website, so why wait? The first step is to identify the mistakes that could be slowing down your website, keeping you from shorter load times, and costing you customers and cash. Next, you can take steps to correct them:

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How we build our API documentation

API DocumentationIf you have ever used APIs you know that good documentation is important. It should also always be up-to-date. In this post I’m not going to discuss how to write documentation and what is required, but rather which tools we use to get the documentation updated as quickly as possible on our developer portal (developer.leaseweb.com).

We employ a number of different tools to help with the process.

  1. RAML (raml.org)

Good documentation starts with good specifications. For this we have decided to use RESTful API Modeling Language (RAML) (created by MuleSoft), together with tools like raml2html (https://github.com/raml2html/raml2html) for creating HTML. Using templates, we can create the HTML as we need it for further processing. Within the RAML specifications, we give descriptions to each endpoints that will become the documentation a user can see on the site.

We already had experience with RAML, which made our choice easy, but there are other tools/specifications around that can do the same. Swagger (swagger.io) is probably the largest and most supported framework around.

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How to Choose the Right SaaS Hosting Provider

SaaS HostingOver the past decade, SaaS has grown to be the primary service delivery model for companies across all industries, and according to a recent Gartner report, over 70 percent of companies utilize the model. While that same report forecasts slower growth in the SaaS market over the next few years, it predicts that among all global cloud services, only Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) will grow more quickly.

There are a number of reasons for the success of the SaaS model, including the flexibility and scalability it offers. The fact that companies can easily offer new integrations and software upgrades to users on an ongoing basis — and test new features and functionality without having to wait for a full release — makes it a more efficient and cost-effective way to provide software.

As the leader of an SaaS company, however, you’ll also be faced with some challenges that are unique to this type of delivery model. SaaS companies often have to process tremendous amounts of data — a challenge that grows as your company also increases in size — and must serve a geographically dispersed user base with demanding security and accessibility requirements. Because of this, finding the right SaaS hosting provider is an important decision.

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How Management Training Is Taking Off

management trainingAt Leaseweb we recently kicked off our Management Development Program. Socrates famously said “Know thyself”, but this is only the beginning. Self-knowledge also leads to a better understanding of the people around us, and the ability to work together in teams. This is why the first step in the program is such an important one: looking into everyone’s unique talents, behaviors, and potential.

Since Leaseweb’s history is connected to aviation, we decided to bring teams to a Flight Simulator session. Besides it being a unique and enjoyable experience, it teaches you that there are many circumstances win which you can’t rely on previous experience, and that our natural, immediate responses to stressful situations are often based on ineffective patterns of behavior. Landing a virtual airplane, without any previous experience, can teach you a tremendous amount about teamwork and the importance of clear communication.

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The Amazing Story of Leaseweb

leasewebOne of the first things you learn as a professional pilot is the importance of teamwork. Even with raw talent, thousands of hours of training, and years of experience, you can’t do it alone.  From the co-pilot sitting by your side, to the flight attendants, mechanics, maintenance staff, and ground crew, everyone needs to work together to get the plane off the ground. But, of course, it doesn’t stop there. It also takes the tower, air traffic control, the airport administration, government agencies, airplane manufacturers, and countless other people and organizations to make flying a Boeing 747 look easy.

The importance of teamwork is something I have carried with me since the earliest days of Leaseweb, and something that we as a company decided should be at the very heart of our business. From the beginning we set out to create a great team, bringing together both talented employees from around the world (we have 35 nationalities and counting), as well as our business partners and customers. By understanding that all of these pieces are necessary for real teamwork, we have been able to develop a company that empowers our customers to achieve amazing things.

20 years on, it’s incredible to think that all of this started out of a dorm room in Utrecht. With our original 4 servers, we could have never imagined that we would end up working with leading global brands, and standing at the forefront of the cloud computing industry. We have been fortunate to have had the chance to work with incredible partners whose ideas and feedback have helped continue to push us forward. By always treating our customers as an important part of our team, we have learned from them and used their feedback to create new products, services, and even expand to new markets.

As we celebrate our 20th anniversary, we have decided to look back at everything we’ve accomplished together, the people who have made it possible, and what it means for the future of our company. To do so, we asked our colleagues and customers to come up with 20 amazing stories and reflections, which they feel encapsulate the spirit and values of Leaseweb, and collected them in an anniversary book.

I invite you to read it for yourself and share our journey with us.

How Scrum Can Help Your Projects Take Flight

ScrumWith founders who began their careers as professional pilots, the history and culture of Leaseweb have close ties to the principles of Aviation. So when deciding on a development methodology, Scrum became the natural choice because it fits well with these principles.

In Jeff Sutherland’s book Scrum: The Art of Doing Twice the Work in Half the Time, he explains the origins of Scrum. I recently recognized the strong correlation between some of these principles and the one’s held by Leaseweb while attending a management training day that included a flight simulator experience.

Jeff Sutherland describes the following model:

  • Observe the target area and find the past path into and out of the hot zone.
  • Orient yourself in the face of unexpected events.
  • Decide instinctively.
  • Act decisively based on instincts and hard wiring.

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What You Need to Know When Choosing a Cloud Solution for SaaS

SaaS hostingUnless you are Oracle, Salesforce, or another enterprise-level company, the cost of opening your own data center can be prohibitive. While this may be true, the benefits of operating in the cloud are clear from both a business and an IT standpoint. You can deploy software quickly, applications are easy to use, and maintenance and upgrade costs are lower than in the traditional model.

If your company doesn’t want to deal with the hassle or expense of managing everything itself, then working with a SaaS hosting company can offer you all the advantages of a cloud solution without blowing through the company’s capital expenditure budget.

By hosting in the cloud, you’ll be able to focus on developing software that runs smoothly without having to worry about managing equipment. IT departments will be able to rest easy, knowing that your cloud provider will handle data security, software upgrades, and compliance requirements — all without getting in the way of your business. What’s more, many IaaS providers offer models based on meeting various levels of operating expenditures, making it easier for your business to meet its budgetary needs.

As you explore different cloud providers, it’s important to consider each platform’s performance, reliability, and scalability before you make a final decision. The best cloud platforms are fully redundant, provide state-of-the-art equipment, are built to scale, and are backed by a team that understands the unique needs of different businesses and verticals.

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Win a ticket to attend SHA2017

SHA2017 is a non profit outdoor Hacker camp taking place in the Netherlands on August 4 – 8, 2017. Yesterday they’ve reached the maximum amount of tickets and SHA2017 is sold out!

About 3000 people are expected to join this year to participate in interesting projects, talks, and activities. You can find more information here.

Are you interested in attending SHA2017?
Help us find a Site Reliability Engineer with good knowledge of Chef, Nginx, and Elasticsearch, and win a free ticket to attend SHA2017.

Candidates have to apply directly on the website. Please ask them to mention your name as the referral.

You can also email the CV to b.poveda@global.leaseweb.com by July 15.

You will win a ticket to attend SHA2017 if the candidate is invited to the first “technical” interview round.

 

Still happy at LeaseWeb after all these years

Working for LeaseWebI have been working for LeaseWeb for more than 7 years, and I’m still enjoying every day. But in all this time, I have yet to write a blog post about my experience, or reasons for staying at the company for all these years. So here’s my story.

I joined LeaseWeb in 2010 as a Corporate Recruiter, the first one they hired in fact. Although I felt insecure about leaving my job to start a new adventure, all my worries disappeared at my first interview. I knew the company; I had been recruiting new employees for them as an external recruiter more than 6 months. Impressed by their growth I understood the challenges they were facing, so I was excited to have my interview.

I had been working for Manpower for more than 10 years, and really enjoyed the variety of fun projects I worked on. Still, for a number of different reason, I had the feeling that I was not at full speed. Feeling somewhat limited in my personal development, as well in my goal to reach bigger achievements, I took the chance on a new company.

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LeaseWeb on Twitter

TechSummit will host speakers from Lyft, Best Buy and more. Signup now for the best in the industry - limited number lsw.to/lkZ

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Cyberattacks: How to understand the ongoing threat and how to prepare against it lsw.to/lkt