Nasty Gal

You guys have a bunch of groundbreaking features. Image resizing is particularly cool for us—especially for how much byte reduction we see for image delivery to mobile devices

- Cody Thomas, POC & Head of Products, Nasty Gal

Benefits Summary

  • Used Image Resizing and SmartVision to significantly reduce file size, leading to overall TCO reduction
  • Shielded from DDoS, brute-force entry, and other cyber attacks
  • Protected from harmful bots that flood the site, skew data, and warp search algorithms
  • Improved site-wide performance, especially on mobile

The Challenge

Nasty Gal, Nastier Cyber Threats

Today, Nasty Gal’s most significant security challenges come from anonymous cyberattack threats and bot scrapers. Unfortunately, the truth is that the more successful your ecommerce business becomes, the bigger of a target you make. Often, the messages are simple: “Pay us 100 bitcoin at this address or we’ll take down your site.” Thankfully, Nasty Gal doesn’t have to worry if a cyber attack actually occurs, since Instart Logic’s AppShield offer for security and integrity provides protection along the entire application delivery path. With layer 7 mitigation capabilities as well as IP throttling and blocking, Nasty Gal has peace of mind when someone attempts to threaten the security of their site.

When any application security concerns arise, Nasty Gal found that it can always count on Instart Logic’s engineers for consultation and help in finding a solution. When Nasty Gal was initially evaluating better alternatives to their CDN vendor, support was really key—Cody Thomas remarked that “We love the fact that Instart Logic’s support people are actual engineers.” This proved crucial to helping Nasty Gal solve security and integrity concerns that only grew to become problems as the company scaled globally

The Solution

A Gold Standard for Fashion-Forward FreeThinkers

An immensely popular “global online destination for fashion-forward, free-thinking girls,” Nasty Gal has seen tremendous growth since its founding in 2006. From its origins as an eBay store based in San Francisco, the company has grown into a multi-million dollar retail presence, serving over 550,000 repeat customers across 60 countries. While Nasty Gal has become a gold standard for success in eCommerce fashion, its success did not come without growing pains and threats from an increasingly hostile internet.

One such example was the issue bot scrapers posed for Nasty Gal. Because bots were scraping data for comparison sites and flooding Nasty Gal with requests, they caused significant web performance decreases that were hurting both conversion rates and analytics. They found that when one bot started hitting their site too frequently and scraped their search results, it would skew Nasty Gal’s data and would create false reports. This is because when a bot keeps requesting a search but doesn’t actually “click” through to any of the results, it makes it seem like the search algorithms are off. The team in charge of the site’s search functions would have then refined the search algorithm based on false data. However, since Nasty Gal started using Instart Logic to distinguish between real, human and artificial traffic, the threat of bots to Nasty Gal’s traffic integrity has significantly been reduced.

The Result

Fashion-Forward, Ground-Breaking

As its online store began to see massive increases in traffic both domestically and globally, Nasty Gal also found that they would need something more than just a CDN in order to scale. At first, Nasty Gal was content with simply having a CDN. “At the time we didn’t know the difference,” remarked Cody Thomas, Head of Product at Nasty Gal. “Now that we know what capabilities companies like Instart Logic can offer, it’s obvious that legacy solutions are not innovative and very costly.”

Today, the company leverages Instart Logic’s endpoint-aware application delivery solution to give their customers an eye-popping online shopping experience. A key component to Nasty Gal’s ability to produce spectacular visual experiences without compromising web performance is Instart Logic’s SmartVision technology, a feature that their product team attributes to “significant drops in file size, especially on mobile.” As Instart Logic continues to rollout more and more features, Nasty Gal continues to see further increases web performance improvement.

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