A key differentiator for Continent 8 is its global data centre footprint connected by a unique private network, says global sales director Peter Williams
Many millions have been spent by online gaming providers in recent years, all in the pursuit of the highest levels of availability, security and redundancy. Without all three of those attributes you couldn’t be considered to be “in the game” or taken seriously by the service providers, operators and their customers.
Thus, as demand grows, so does the need for greater capacity, redundancy and services.
While an individual data centre can have the highest levels of redundancy and resilience available, there is a theory that there are still some inherent risks due to it being a single site. While not a true “all eggs in one basket” scenario – as these are very resilient, very well protected and highly available eggs – it is after all one basket.
Moreover, to mitigate this potential (albeit slight) additional risk, the ultimate solution would be to have two completely separate sites between which you can distribute your infrastructure for ultimate disaster-recovery capability.
Continent 8 is therefore delighted that as a result of continued growth in Malta, we have opened our second data centre site on the island. This move not only serves the “ultimate” in resilience to the island, but also enables new options for existing clients in terms of distributed services and will certainly appeal to new entrants to the jurisdiction.
But it’s not just Malta that’s had our attention of late; the company has been working on a number of other key initiatives, with some exciting new services in the pipeline.
In addition to the new data centre in Malta, we have also launched two new data centre locations in the last 12 months.
In December, we went live with our data centre in Lisbon, Portugal, to serve the emerging market in the country, and in February our new Asian-facing facility went live in Taiwan. Both facilities have been deployed in direct response to our customers’ requirements – a philosophy that has underpinned the company’s growth strategy since its inception.
CLOUD BACK-UP EXPANSION
Just over two years ago, Continent 8 launched its revolutionary cloud back-up product. The ﬁrst node was installed in our Isle of Man data centre, which facilitated back-ups locally and from around the world.
The growth has been unprecedented and today the platform is protecting more than 18 trillion bytes of global critical data, which in layman’s terms, is the sum volume of more than 13 million ﬂoppy discs.
Based on this success of the Isle of Man platform, Continent 8 has since taken cloud backup global, with new nodes in Malta and Dublin with plans for a further node on Gibraltar this autumn.
LAUNCH OF CLOUD CONNECT
In April, we went live with our new Cloud Connect product. The service brings commodity cloud providers – such as Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure – together with their end customers, wherever on the Continent 8 network they are.
In doing so, this alleviates some of the primary concerns around public cloud adoption such as security and availability. By bypassing the public internet, enterprises can now improve performance, reduce costs, increase security and leverage public cloud services for more of their applications.
Any customer, hosted in any location can be provided with a virtual circuit directly to their cloud provider of choice.
DDOS PROTECTION AND MITIGATION
Our oﬀering that protects against the eﬀects of distributed denial-of-service attacks continues to expand and over the past year we have invested signiﬁcantly in our global network capacity. During the latter half of 2016 we will go live with new mitigation centres on the US west coast and in Asia, adding to our London and New York locations.
In order to support the increased DDoS services, we will be expanding our private global network from the north-east US through to Los Angeles and on to south-east Asia – our network will then circumnavigate the globe.
Continent 8 continues to have our approach towards service excellence externally veriﬁed and we are pleased to announce that in December we were fully accredited with ISO 27001 for the provision of managed hosting services in our Isle of Man, Dublin and Gibraltar data centres, with Malta being accredited in July.
MANAGED SERVICES ENHANCEMENTS
Continent 8 continues to expand our technical teams, which operate across all of our data centre sites and are driven by two global network operations centres – our EMEA NOC, located in Dublin, Ireland, and our North American NOC, operating out of Montreal, Canada.
This continued expansion and the ever-increasing skill levels across the teams are proving to be enablers for the company, presenting more opportunities to move higher up the “value chain” with our customers. Based on this, investment development is currently underway for a new range of more integrated, end-to-end managed solutions.
As is plain to see, the last 12 months have been exciting to say the least, and with our second data centre a signiﬁcant milestone is about to be achieved for Continent 8 in Malta.
It is a mutually beneﬁcial environment where ideas are exchanged and innovation occurs. We’re very much looking forward to working with our customers to drive innovation and technological developments.
Article appeared in the iNTERGAMINGi issue 5, 2016