What is a Content Delivery Network?

We collected the most frequently asked questions and answered here.

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CDN Speed  Why use a Content Delivery Network? CDN Speed

Speed Is Critical 

 

If your website takes too long to load, you’ll lose visitors, influence, and sales!

There are five key reasons why you should consider implementing a CDN to boost your online performance.

Increased website performance. This is the key reason for implementing a CDN. Thanks to its unique infrastructure, utilising multiple servers with identical copies of cacheable website data stored around the ground in geographically significant points of traffic, CDNs redirect end users to the server closest to them when a data request is made. This allows data to travel with a lower latency, reduced packet loss and increased download speeds.

Easy scalability and load balancing. CDNs provide website owners with the ability to easily grow their online presence along with their business. As traffic gradually increases, extra permanent server capacity can be added, usually through a few easy clicks on an online control panel. Furthermore, in times of peak, unexpected traffic, requests can be dynamically load balanced amongst other servers on the networks to ensure all end users have a trouble free experience.

Rock solid website reliability. As website files are distributed across many servers around the globe, a CDN provides website owners with unparalleled reliability. The multiple file copies act as live backups, with end users being rerouted to the next nearest server if their closet one becomes overloaded or fails either due to technical difficulties or sabotage such as DDoS attacks. This all helps to keep uptime at close to 100%, with many providers offering SLAs to guarantee this.

Cost Savings. One of the most important reasons many businesses choose to use a CDN is that it provides large cost savings when compared to traditional delivery methods. By offloading traffic to a specialised CDN provider that regular updates its state of the art equipment, organisations no longer need to invest in an expensive network of their own, reducing per megabyte delivery costs.

Improved search rankings. A relatively new feature of many search engines now allows pages to be ranked in search results based on the amount of time it takes them to load. As such, improving website performance via a CDN solution is one of the best ways to help optimise your search engine performance.

These 5 points all help to makes end users happy by ensuring their user experience is as fast and seamless as possible. This in turn can result in increased traffic flows to your website and in cases where ecommerce forms the back bone of your online presence, improved profits. Get in touch with our experienced team at CDNfinder today for expert advice as to why you should start using a content delivery network for all your online needs.

There have been many exciting developments in the Content Delivery Network (CDN) industry that have led to more and more people taking notice of this fast moving and highly effective technology. While the popularity of CDNs is constantly increasing, however, many people are still unaware as to what exactly a CDN is.

As global internet traffic levels have been growing exponentially over the past two decades, a solution was needed that would help to secure worldwide bandwidth levels well into the future. That’s were CDNs come in. Content Delivery Networks were created to supercharge the way that data is delivered between servers and end users. By providing this flexibility, CDNs accelerate a wide variety of websites that you are likely use every day without even noticing, from basic software distribution services to leading video streaming websites, online stores and social networks.

While CDNs accelerate many of your favourite sites right under your nose, how exactly do they provide the speed you have come to rely upon and trust? By utilising a network of servers located around the world, CDNs consist of a unique network infrastructure that ensures all of a website’s data is available quickly and at all times.

These servers are placed at globally significant points that experience the most traffic, with each containing an identical copy of cacheable data from the website’s original server. With multiple servers located around the world, CDNs can deal with large amounts of data requests from several different regions, with each continent usually having its own network points of presence. The architecture of CDNs also means that they are highly scalable, with customers being able to add permanent additional capacity quickly and easily as their website grows.

It is this unique method of delivering data that has proved to be so effective for CDNs. If you’d like to learn more about content delivery networks, please get in touch with one of CDNfinder’s highly experienced team of advisors who can guide you towards selecting the ideal CDN provider for your needs.

Depending on your business objective and technical needs you might benefit from some of the following services;

  1. Static cacheable content acceleration
  2. Dynamic non-cacheable content acceleration
  3. Secured content acceleration
  4. Mobile content acceleration
  5. Streaming
  6. Video platform services
  7. CDN storage
  8. DDoS mitigation
  9. Web Application Firewall
  10. Globally distributed DNS
  11. DNS health check, monitoring and failover
  12. DNS load-balacing

There isn’t a one-size-fits-all formula for success. From startups just finding their feet, to established companies with decades of brand history, we shape our team and process around each client. Each assignment is unique, and should be measured against an individual set of objectives.

If your website runs a popular Content  Management System (CMS) such as, WordPress, Memento, Drupal, OpenCart, Joomla, Social Engine, etc chances are we’ll have a guide with instructions on how to integrate your website CMS with a Content Delivery Network (CDN) service.

If your CMS is not supported or you are running a custom website, you will need to manually point your content to CDN. It’s quite easy, essentially you’ll need to adapt your source code to serve static content from selected CDN.

Assuming you have the following setup;

Origin Hostname       http://static.mywebsite.com
CDN Hostname           http://cdn.mywebsite.com
CDN CNAME URL      http://something.cdnprovider.net

In order to have objects called from the CDN,  you’ll need to replace the origin path inside your tags with the new CDN Hostname or CDN CNAME URL.

If you use the CDN Hostname make sure you have already CNAMED the CDN Hostname to the CDN CNAME URL by adding a new DNS record into your DNS settings. If the CDN Hostname has not been CNAMED content will not be delivered from the CDN resource.

Here’s an example of CDN integration.

Replace

<img src=”mywebsite.com/path/to/image.jpg” />

with

<img src=”cdn.mywebsite.com/path/to/image.jpg” />

or

<img src=”something.cdnprovider.net/path/to/image.jpg” />

The same example can be followed with other types of static cacheable content such as CSS, JS, SWF and any other you wish to delegate to CDN.

Follow the below easy 10 steps to accelerate your WordPress website via CDN by configuring W3 Total Cache plugin!

Before starting your W3 Total Cache plugin setup please backup your WordPress site and database.

1. The first step you have to take is to install W3 Total Cache plugin to your WordPress. There are two ways to install the plugin as following;

Download from W3 Total Cache website

  • Go to W3 Total Cache website and download the plugin. (You do not need to unzip this file)
  • Login to your “Wordpress Admin” section.
  • Go to “Plugins” and click on “Add New”.
  • Click on the “Upload Plugin” from  the top right.
  • Click on “Choose File” button and select the downloaded “W3 Total Cache” plugin.
  • Click on “Install Now” button to install W3 Total Cache plugin to your WordPress.
  • Click on “Installed Plugins”, find  W3 Total Cache plugin from the list and then click on “Activate”.

 

Install from WordPress

  • Login to your “Wordpress Admin” section.
  • Go to “Plugins” and click on “Add New”.
  • Search for “W3 Total Cache”
  • Click on “Install Now” button to install W3 Total Cache plugin to your WordPress.
  • Click on “Installed Plugins”, find  W3 Total Cache plugin from the list and then click on “Activate”.

 

2. From the left hand side menu of your WP Admin find the “Performance” tab (Should be the last at the bottom) and click on “General Settings”

3. Scroll down to the “CDN” section.

4. Check Enable CDN and select Generic Mirror from CDN type drop down if the Selected CDN Provider is not listed.

5. Click Save all settings.

General_Settings___W3_Total_Cache_‹_CDN_Finder___Compare_Buy_Content_Delivery_Networks_—_WordPress  WordPress CDN integration with W3 Total Cache plugin General Settings   W3 Total Cache     CDN Finder   Compare Buy Content Delivery Networks     WordPress

6. From the left hand side menu of your WP Admin find the “Performance” tab and click on “CDN”

8. Scroll down to the “Configuration” section and enter in “Replace site’s hostname with:”  your CDN CNAME URL or CDN Hostname.

9. Click Save all settings.

Content_Delivery_Network___W3_Total_Cache_WordPress  WordPress CDN integration with W3 Total Cache plugin Content Delivery Network   W3 Total Cache WordPress

10. Go back to “General Settings” enable “Preview Mode”first to test first and then if all works as desired click on “Save all settings”.  If you click on “Enable” button you will get redirected to a page showing you your website being accelerated by selected CDN as per your W3 Total Cache settings. If you notices any unusual behaviour do not click on “Save all settings”.

General_Settings___W3_Total_Cache_‹_CDN_Finder___Compare_Buy_Content_Delivery_Networks_—_WordPress1  WordPress CDN integration with W3 Total Cache plugin General Settings   W3 Total Cache     CDN Finder   Compare Buy Content Delivery Networks     WordPress1

To confirm that the plugin is working correctly view the page source of your website. If your URL paths are showing either the configured CDN CNAME URL or CDN Hostname then you’ve successfully integrated your website with a CDN.

1. Login to your admin panel, e.g. www.yourwebsite.com/index.php/admin123.

cdn-finder-magento-login  Magento CDN Integration cdn finder magento login

2. Hover over “System” and select “Configuration”. In the “Configuration General” section area, select “Web”.

cdn-finder-magento-system  Magento CDN Integration cdn finder magento system

3. In the “Configuration General” section area, select “Web”.

cdn-finder-magento-configuration  Magento CDN Integration cdn finder magento configuration

 

4. Select the “Unsecure” drop down – Change the following URLs with the purchased CDN resource: “Base Skin URL”, “Base Media URL”, and “Base JavaScript URL”. They should have their corresponding suffixes, e.g. Base Media URL will look like https://www.yourwebsite.com/media/

Changes should take effect instantly – Go to your website and open an image in a new window, the URL will show that content is now being served from the CDN. Alternatively, check your code by right-clicking and selecting “View Page Source” to see assets coming from the CDN.

1. Head on over to Drupal CDN Module, then go to “Downloads”, right-click and “Copy Link Address” of the latest CDN module for Drupal.

cdn-finder-drupal-cdn-module  Drupal CDN Integration cdn finder drupal cdn module

2. Login to your Drupal’s admin page, e.g. admin.yourwebsite.com/user – Then click “Modules” and click on “Install new module”. Paste the URL into the “Install from a URL” field and hit “Install”.

cdn-finder-drupal-module  Drupal CDN Integration cdn finder drupal modulecdn-finder-drupal-modules  Drupal CDN Integration cdn finder drupal modules

3. Once installed, head back to “Modules”, scroll to “Performance and Scalability”, enable the CDN module, and save configuration.

cdn-finder-drupal-performance-scalability  Drupal CDN Integration cdn finder drupal performance scalabilitycdn-finder-drupal-performamce  Drupal CDN Integration cdn finder drupal performamce

4. Select “Configure” on the newly activated CDN module. In the development window, select “Enabled” within “Status”, then save the configuration. Now select the “Details” tab and paste in your CDN resource, e.g. https://www.yourwebsite.com – Now save the configuration.

cdn-finder-drupal  Drupal CDN Integration cdn finder drupal

5. In the red warning box, select “Aggregate and compress CSS files”. Within the “Bandwidth Optimisation” box, tick “Aggregate and compress CSS files” and “Aggregate JavaScript files”, then save the configuration.

Changes should take effect instantly – Go to your website and open an image in a new window, the URL will show that content is now being served from the CDN. Alternatively, check your code by right-clicking and selecting View Page Source to see assets coming from the CDN.

1. Download the CDN for Joomla! plugin – Then login to your Joomla admin, e.g. yourwebsite.com/administrator.

cdn-finder-joomla-login  Joomla CDN Integration cdn finder joomla login

2. Click “Extensions” on the top-bar and select “Extension Manager”. Within the Upload & Install Joomla Extension, select “Choose File”, grab the CDN for Joomla plugin you downloaded, and hit “Upload & Install”.

cdn-finder-joomla-extensions  Joomla CDN Integration cdn finder joomla extensions

cdn-finder-joomla-plugin  Joomla CDN Integration cdn finder joomla plugin

*Please note – The CDN for Joomla! plugin is free, however the Pro version which offers SSL support is not.

3. Select “System” in the top-bar and click “Clear Cache”. Select “Clear Cache”, tick all the cache files, and hit “Delete” – This will purge all your stored cached files, forcing your domain to pull assets from the CDN.

cdn-finder-clear-cache  Joomla CDN Integration cdn finder clear cache

cdn-finder-config  Joomla CDN Integration cdn finder config

Changes should take effect instantly – Go to your website and open an image in a new window, the URL will show that content is now being served from the CDN. Alternatively, check your code by right-clicking and selecting View Page Source to see assets coming from the CDN.

 

Content Delivery Enterprise  Content Delivery Network for Enterprise Content Delivery Enterprise

There are several key CDN features that are particular important for enterprise customers:

Performance. CDNs provide vast improvements in performance over traditional data delivery networks thanks to the way they cache data to servers across the globe, allowing end users to access the data from the server closest to them. This is important for enterprises because it allows their customers to access data quicker while also allowing employees to access business files quickly wherever they are in the world.

Cost effectiveness. CDNs reduce the need for organizations to invest in their own expensive network infrastructure. And with CDN providers constantly upgrading their state of the art software, businesses are able to focus on their core product and save money at the same time.

Employee training support. CDNs specialize in the streaming of video files and delivery of large data files. These services are important for large enterprise customers as it allows them to utilize wide area networks to easily and cost effectively train their employees around the globe through the delivery of informational documents and videos.

Scalability. Enterprises are always seeking ways to improve their market share and grow their business. CDNs make it easy for an organization to grow their web presence along with the business by utilizing additional servers around the globe, dependent on where the organization has expanded. This process is usually quick and easy, available via online control panels and dedicated teams from the host provider.

Security and reliability. Today’s CDN providers employ the strictest security measures, from secure HTTP to token authentication. This ensures that your data is always safe and never compromised. Furthermore, by storing data across several servers, uptime is guaranteed. If one server becomes overloaded or fails, end users are simply rerouted to the next nearest server. As well as improving uptime, this also mitigates against acts of sabotage such as DDoS attacks.

Analytics. To help inform future business and website development decisions, CDNs come packaged with highly advanced analytics tools. Providing comprehensive information regarding a website’s users, such as location, age, gender, buying habits and personal preferences, website developers can use this information to develop more engaging sites while product managers can develop products that their customers will love.

Centrally managed. With complete control and flexibility for network administrators, CDNs provide a central control panel from which access control, disk caching policies and WAN bandwidth use can be managed.

With these points in mind, it’s easy to see how a CDN can be greatly beneficial to an enterprise’s online presence. Our knowledgeable CDNfinder teams have a great deal experience when it comes to advising organizations looking to boost their website performance via a Content Delivery Network. Get in touch

Advertisers and websites that host advertisements can benefit from using CDNs for a number of reasons, including:

HTTP streaming technologies that allow large, rich media adverts to be displayed quickly and smoothly. This is particularly beneficial for video advertisements, it means that users won’t be left waiting to see an advert, thus reducing irritation and making it more likely that the video is viewed.

Increased bandwidth means that the loading of an advert does not affect the speed at which the main contents of a web page load. This is also important for ensuring the end users experience is not affected and it helps to build customer confidence and ensure return visits.

CDNs give advertisers the ability to deploy over a greater number of sites around the world, broadening their reach and potential revenue streams.

Advanced analytics tools that enable a host of consumer information to be collected, including buying habits, geographical location, age and gender. This allows highly informed decisions to be made when creating new advertising campaigns, allowing advertisements to be specifically targeted towards certain groups, and even individuals. This helps to increase conversion rates, and ultimately revenue.

By harnessing the power of Content Delivery Networks, advertisers and website owners can provide adverts on a scale that has previously been unthinkable. This allows them to raise the awareness of the products they are selling or endorsing, and allows potential customers to view them in a way that is as unobtrusive as possible. Furthermore, the ability to customize adverts for individuals and groups makes the message highly relevant, creating something that people want to view and take notice of.

Content Delivery Network Social Media  Content Delivery Network for Social Media Content Delivery Network Social Media

There are many specific advantages of CDNs over traditional networks that can benefit social media organizations. These include:

Lower latency and higher bandwidth helps to optimize traffic flows. This ensures that end users can upload and view photos and videos with ease, and also allows them to play multiplayer casual games with their connections without slow down.

CDNs provide a highly reliable service. With many redundant servers operating at once, uptime is close to 100%, and this is usually back up by a Service Level Agreement.

Improved bandwidth allows for the provision of rich media, such as high quality images, high definition video and online games, further improving the customer experience.

Real-time and highly detailed analytics software is provided as standard with most CDN solutions. This allows social network owners and developers to find out a great deal of information about their users,

One of the biggest challenges for social networks is how to monetize their content and raised funds for continued operation. This is usually done through advertising. By ensuring that network performance is optimized via CDNs, social network users will continue to use the social network, providing the ongoing advertising revenues that are required to keep the service running.

Content Delivery Media  Content Delivery Network for Media Content Delivery Media

CDNs can provide multimedia owners with several specific benefits:

High delivery speeds and bandwidth enable large high definition video files to be delivered almost instantaneously and on demand, with many different formats being supported. Equally, audio files can also be delivered via this method. This ensures that end users are kept happy.

Highly reliable live streams can be supported for purposes such as live sporting events. Broadcast around the globe, these can be offered on a pay per view basis to provide income streams.

Content delivery networks have highly scalable architectures. This means that as traffic increases for a particular file or website, extra bandwidth can be dynamically allocated.

Many content delivery networks offer Video platform functionalities. This allows videos to be uploaded and encoded into many different formats allowing the greatest level of cross device compatibility and ensuring that as large an audience as possible is reached. Highly secure protocols are used for the delivery and storage of data, ensuring that its integrity is kept and no one accesses files without permission Easily configurable monetization services are usually offered, allowing content owners to add features such as advertisements to their media. This can provide income streams to further enable the creation of rich multimedia.

As more and more television networks provide online on demand video streaming, and as the popularity of services such as YouTube and Vimeo show no sign of abating, delivering rich multimedia smoothly and efficiently is becoming ever more necessary.

Furthermore, with a great deal of new traffic coming from emerging markets, easily scalable way in which new bandwidth can be added, and also the highly secure connections that are used, Content Delivery Networks are the perfect way of ensuring that rich multimedia can be delivered to end users both today and well into the future.

Content_Delivery_Finance  Content Delivery Network for Finance Content Delivery Finance

By providing high download speeds and low latencies, CDNs are an ideal way for financial services companies to execute low latency trading while also accessing market data at high speeds.

The improved speeds of content delivery networks over traditional networks is also an advantage to globalized companies thanks to the speed of connections that can exist between offices located around the world. Secure and fast virtual private networks can be created to allow for high-speed transfer of confidential files such as account information and invoices. Furthermore, with the scalable transport bandwidth and storage space available, data can be stored as live backups throughout a CDN’s globally located system of servers. With several copies of the redundant information available, a robust disaster recovery infrastructure is in place. If one server fails or if locally held data is lost, it can easily be recovered from one of the many other servers that are available.

With highs speeds and low latencies, banking institutions are also able to offer fast and immersive online banking experiences for their retail customers. When combined with the availability of the security features such as Secure Sockets Layer protocol and various encryption methods, CDNs provide a highly secure method on operating online.

The use of the internet for financial services has allowed many companies to flourish and grow,tackling new emerging markets and capturing a greater breadth of customers than would otherwise have been possible. By embracing Content Delivery Networks, financial service providers can ensure that they continue to provide world-class products in a highly secure manner and with the speed required to make split second decisions aided by up to the minute information.

 

Content Delivery Network Gaming  Content Delivery Network for Gaming gaming 28646  jpg

There are many specific benefits that CDNs can offer those in the gaming industry. These include:

  • Lower latency results in a lower likelihood of lag, online online gamers’ worst nightmare. This helps to increase the customer’s loyalty to the game and the likelihood of continued playing and purchasing of future titles.
  • Fast download speeds enables users to download new games quickly. With modern games averaging up to 10GB in files sizes this is highly important. A customer will be more likely to purchase more titles if they are able to download them quickly, thus increasing revenues for developers.
  • Where the latest updates must be downloaded in order to play a game online, a CDN will help make that process take as little time as possible,
  • Increased performance opens up a new world of opportunities in regards to monetization. In game purchasable and downloadable content can be provided without the worry of it affecting game play, and advertising can be deployed without a slowdown in gaming performance.
  • Intelligent load balancing can be employed to manage traffic across servers in real time, without any interference to game play. Gamers will automatically be transferred to the fastest server without even realizing.
  • The in depth analytics tools that have become a key feature of CDNs can be used to collect a plethora of information about customers including gaming habits, purchasing patterns and demographic statistics such as gender, age and geographic location. This information can be used for targeted advertising and also for helping to develop new game titles and ensuring that they are relevant for the target market.

 

Creating an environment for gamers to socialize and play together allows a game to develop a culture of its own, and this is incredibly important for developing brand loyalty in a highly competitive and saturated industry. CDNs can therefore provide those in the games industry with an attractive method of increasing revenues and improving network performance in a market that will continue to grow at break neck speed.

Print  Content Delivery Network for E-commerce Content Delivery EcommerceCDNs provide many benefits that can directly affect e-commerce applications, including:

  • Improved network performance and bandwidth ensures that customers are always able to access online stores, resulting in increased sales, customer satisfaction and an increased likelihood of brand loyalty. By increasing completed transactions, there is also greater scope for up sells and addons.
  • Shopping cart acceleration can be integrated into the website, ensuring that users do not abandon carts when performance is poor. This helps minimize missed sales opportunities and can work across devices, allowing customers to browse now and pay later and also access their cart via whichever means is most convenient for them at a given time.
  • Rich media and video can be used for advertising, the promotion of products and virtual store fronts. By optimizing this content with a CDN, it can be displayed without buffering, and allows business to develop brand identities and market new products. This can help boost conversion rates.
  • Stores, warehouses and suppliers can be connected across geographical regions ensuring that communication is maintained and new products can be requested at all times to keep inventories fully stocked. This will eliminate lengthy waits for customers and improve brand perceptions.

 

Content delivery networks also provide highly informative analytics tools. allows businesses to accurately monitor which products are most popular in specific regions around the world.allows targeted advertising to be directed towards individual customers.

Research has shown that web users abandon sites that take too long to load. With more and more trade taking place online, it is impossible to ignore the need for a robust network infrastructure. CDNs can provide ecommerce businesses with the means to deploy high quality services for their customers at an affordable price. emerging markets, deal with new customers and the increase in profits that they can provide.

Below CDNs offer free Shared IP Custom SSL hosting;

  • CDN77
  • CDNsun
  • CDNify
  • Cloudflare
  • CloudFront
  • KeyCDN

Last updated 01/03/2016

SSL Verification  Type of SSL services offered by CDN providers SSL Verification

These days, the use of SSL has become much more common. Traditionally, it was mandatory to have your website setup with a unique IP in order to use an SSL certificate.

  • Shared Domain SSL: Implies the use of a shared domain SSL that belongs to the CDN provider.
  • Shared IP Custom SSL (SNI): This allows a server to connect multiple SSL Certificates to one IP address and gate. SNI stands for Server Name Indication and is an extension of the TLS protocol. It indicates which hostname is being contacted by the browser at the beginning of the ‘handshake’-process.
  • Dedicated IP Custom SSL: The ability to upload own SSL certificate to each CDN POP on a dedicated IP and resources.

 

More recently, SNI based SSL has become available and it has caused some confusion. To drive SSL cost down CDN providers have started offering the ability ti shared the same IP among multiple SSLs. In this scenario, even though multiple domains are pointing to the same end point, web servers can differentiate the traffic by parsing the host header in the HTTP request. This wikipedia article contains a list of supported browsers.

The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is a set of requirements designed to ensure that ALL companies that process, store or transmit credit card information maintain a secure environment. Essentially any merchant that has a Merchant ID (MID).

The Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC) was launched on September 7, 2006 to manage the ongoing evolution of the Payment Card Industry (PCI) security standards with focus on improving payment account security throughout the transaction process. The PCI DSS is administered and managed by the PCI SSC (www.pcisecuritystandards.org), an independent body that was created by the major payment card brands (Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover and JCB.).

It is important to note, the payment brands and acquirers are responsible for enforcing compliance, not the PCI council. A copy of the PCI DSS is available here.

There are 4 merchant levels as defined by Visa, all merchants will fall into one of the four merchant levels based on Visa transaction volume over a 12-month period.

Transaction volume is based on the aggregate number of Visa transactions (inclusive of credit, debit and prepaid) from a merchant Doing Business As (‘DBA’). In cases where a merchant corporation has more than one DBA, Visa acquirers must consider the aggregate volume of transactions stored, processed or transmitted by the corporate entity to determine the validation level. If data is not aggregated, such that the corporate entity does not store, process or transmit cardholder data on behalf of multiple DBAs, acquirers will continue to consider the DBA’s individual transaction volume to determine the validation level.

Merchant levels as defined by Visa:

Level 1: Any merchant — regardless of acceptance channel — processing over 6M Visa transactions per year. Any merchant that Visa, at its sole discretion, determines should meet the Level 1 merchant requirements to minimize risk to the Visa system.

Level 2: Any merchant — regardless of acceptance channel — processing 1M to 6M Visa transactions per year.

Level 3: Any merchant processing 20,000 to 1M Visa e-commerce transactions per year.

Level 4: Any merchant processing fewer than 20,000 Visa e-commerce transactions per year, and all other merchants — regardless of acceptance channel — processing up to 1M Visa transactions per year.

* Any merchant that has suffered a hack that resulted in an account data compromise may be escalated to a higher validation level.

Source: http://usa.visa.com/merchants/risk_management/cisp_merchants.html

Based on our knowledge the following CDN providers are PCI compliant;

  • Akamai
  • CDNetworks
  • ChinaCache
  • ChinaNetCentre
  • CloudFront (Amazon)
  • Fastly
  • HighWinds
  • Incapsula
  • InstartLogic
  • Level3
  • Limelight
  • Quantil
  • Verizon

If you are a CDN provider and want to be added to the list please submit a request through our online contact us form.

An ICP License stands for “Internet Content Provider License”, this is a permit that can be only issued by the Chinese PRC Ministry of Industry and Information.

Any website hosted inside of Mainland China needs to apply for this license and all hosting companies or CDNs in Mainland China are responsible for checking if their customers websites have a valid ICP license.

An ICP License is only required if your website is hosted or delivered via CDN from inside of Mainland China.

If you have a website hosted in China without a valid ICP License, after an initial grace period your hosting or CDN provider will shut down your website until you can prove you have a valid license.

If your target audience is inside the China you have the option to deliver your content from outside china leveraging on your hosting or CDN provider peering and transit agreements or to apply for an ICP licence or to choose a CDN that offer a shared ICP licence that you can use.

Delivering content from inside china is faster and more reliable but might not be applicable to every business depending on budget and type of content you want to deliver from inside China.

In order to apply for an ICP licence the first step would be to incorporate a company in Mainland China. Foreign companies need to find a local Chinese partner who will have a controlling share of the Chinese incorporated company.

You can then apply for a license from the PRC Ministry of Industry & Information website, you will need to create an account by verifying your email address and phone number first. Once registered on the website you will gain access to the ICP Licence request form, download the form,  fill in as appropriate with  your personal, company and hosting or CDN companies details, including your desired domain name and a description of your website.

Applications are not guaranteed to to be accepted and can take from 30 – 90 days depending on the nature of business you wish to be conducting in Mainland China. 

Find below the list of providers that own infrastructure and can deliver content from inside Mainland China;

Updated 01/03/2016

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