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Most organisations are aware of Cloudflare and the core benefits of the platform, such as the Web Application Firewall and Content Delivery Network, which both protect your application from DDOS attacks and compromise, as well as enhance performance by caching static content geographically closer to users through a global network of edge servers.

These core features, as well as Cloudflare’s excellent (and extremely fast) DNS, mean we recommend all clients utilise a managed Cloudflare solution to complement their hosting infrastructure.

Cloudflare Enterprise takes the core features present in their lower Pro and Business offerings and adds Enterprise-level features. In this article, I will explore some of the most interesting Cloudflare Enterprise features, valued by our Enterprise clients.

Cloudflare Enterprise Log Management

Cloudflare Enterprise offers log management functionality allowing users to collect, store, and analyse logs generated by their websites or applications. This feature is called Cloudflare Logs.

Cloudflare Logs works by ingesting logs generated by various Cloudflare services, including CDN, WAF, and Workers. These logs are then stored in a centralised location, where customers can access them for analysis and troubleshooting purposes. Logpush v2, part of Cloudflare Logs, was released in mid-2020 and is capable of delivering logs in less than one minute with batches of up to 100,000 records per file, a larger dataset than previously. Enterprise clients can then use log ingestion software such as Dataset (formerly Scalyr) or Taegis XDR to monitor and report on security events relevant to their service.

The log ingestion process in Cloudflare Enterprise is highly customisable, allowing customers to configure which logs are collected, how frequently they are collected, and where they are stored. Customers can also use Cloudflare’s API to send logs to external storage services or log management platforms, such as Amazon S3, Google Cloud Storage, or Elasticsearch for ingestion.

One of the key benefits of Cloudflare Logs is that it provides real-time visibility into website and application traffic, security threats, and performance metrics. This allows customers to identify and respond to issues quickly, optimise their website or application for better performance, and gain insights into user behaviour.

Cloudflare Logs also provides several security features, such as access controls, encryption, and retention policies, to ensure that log data is secure and compliant with industry regulations.

Overall, Cloudflare Enterprise’s log management feature is a powerful tool for businesses looking to gain insights into their website or application traffic, troubleshoot issues, and improve performance and security.

cloudflare enterprise benefits

Bot Analytics

Bots perform a necessary function for the major search engines, crawling and detecting changes in your website so that search listings are relevant. However, there are many Bots out there for many different platforms, and some Bots can have serious impacts on your website performance, particularly if you have a high traffic volume. Some Bots are also malicious, scraping web content, DDoS attacking sites or attempting to exploit known vulnerabilities.

Cloudflare Bot Analytics, as part of Cloudflare Enterprise, gives visibility of Bots accessing your website or application. Bots are automatically categorised and Cloudflare employs machine learning to distinguish between legitimate users and bots. Bot analytics gives proper insights into identified bots such as their country of origin, frequency of access and specific actions they attempt on your website.

With the full picture of the inbound Bot traffic to your website, Cloudflare’s highly granular rules and policies can be implemented to block or challenge suspicious bot activities as well as rate limit legitimate but overly aggressive bots.

With Cloudflare Enterprise, we can better understand the bot landscape for your application, identify potential threats, and proactively implement security measures to safeguard your online assets.

Bots can consume server resources, bandwidth, and impact website performance for legitimate visitors. Cloudflare Bot Analytics provides insights into the impact of bots on your infrastructure, allowing us to optimise resource allocation and improve overall performance. Using Cloudflare to identify and mitigate bot traffic, our team ensures a better user experience for your legitimate visitors.

China Network Access

Any organisation that has attempted to or researched launching and maintaining a web presence in China will know that the process is highly bureaucratic and time-consuming, with many logistical considerations around website speed and hosting location.

Cloudflare Enterprise allows organisations to utilise China Network Access (CNA) to have a web presence hosted inside China with much less consideration to the obstacles previously mentioned.

Cloudflare has partnered with native Chinese data centres to allow Cloudflare Enterprise clients to deliver their content to this high-growth market without having to work with multiple third parties and the Chinese authorities. Because Cloudflare CNA content is served from within China, Chinese users experience a low latency version of your website, and performance is excellent.

China has strict internet censorship, and external javascript and other restricted content is filtered by the country’s Great Firewall. As a result, most Western sites cannot be simply launched in China without significant code changes. China Network Access provides tools that allow websites to be optimised for accessibility in China to ensure your web presence is delivered correctly to Chinese audiences without disruption.

CNA also benefits from Cloudflare Enterprise DDoS protection capabilities to protect organisations from attacks which originate in China. As a leader in the 2021 Forrester Wave DDoS Mitigation Solutions report, Cloudflare DDoS protection is mature. It has a strong reputation giving organisations peace of mind that their assets are protected from attack and the resulting consequences.

Compliance with Chinese Regulations is required for all websites servicing Chinese users. CNA is designed to meet these Compliance requirements by providing localised network infrastructure, data storage and adherence to Chinese internet regulations. Using the service will ensure that your application or website is aligned with China’s legal framework.

Hosting outside of China (for example, in Australia) can still result in latency and poor performance when serving Chinese users. Organisations will be aware that reduced latency and improved performance lead to enhanced user satisfaction, increased engagement, and higher conversion rates. For any organisation serious about targeting Chinese customers the performance of CNA is a valuable part of your China strategy.

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Data Processing & Compliance

In order to maintain compliance, many organisations control where their data is stored and processed. This can pose issues when using global CDN platforms as many process information outside of the EU, for example. In order to prevent this scenario, we utilise Cloudflare Enterprise’s Data Localization suite for many of our European clients, which facilitates control over where web data is stored and processed. It is possible to choose data residency locations from over 200 cities worldwide ensuring that data remains in specific regions in order to ensure compliance objectives are successfully met.

Traffic Steering is another feature which is part of Cloudflare’s Data Localization suite and compliments Data Residency preferences previously mentioned. Utilising this feature, we can ensure that user requests are routed to data centres in our preferred data processing locations. This gives control over where data is accessed and processed by end-users.

Cloudflare maintains a strong focus on compliance with various data protection regulations, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). By adhering to these standards, utilising Cloudflare ensures that your data is processed in a manner that meets the relevant compliance requirements.

It is, of course, important for any specific feature and capabilities to be reviewed and understood as part of a data localisation strategy, and we work closely with clients to advise and help them understand the specific features and capabilities offered by Cloudflare so that they can be implemented in line with legal and regulatory requirements.

Above are just some of the Enterprise level features that Cloudflare provides. Cloudflare Enterprise has a higher level of customisation and performance, and as a Cloudflare partner, our team is experienced in onboarding clients onto this excellent web security platform. We can tailor a solution that meets your organisation’s specific security & compliance requirements, ensuring you have the peace of mind that critical web assets are protected and compliant. Contact us today to discuss your requirements.

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