How Catena Media Uses Auth0 for Dynamic B2E User Management
Finding B2E solutions to keep pace with a growing company
About Catena Media
Catena Media is a high-quality online lead generation company within iGaming and Financial Services with record breaking retention rates of over 5 million monthly users. Boasting a wide and solid platform, Catena Media creates high-quality online leads to its customers using its marketing tools and creating substantive content.
When Catena Media’s founders started their business in 2008, they worked out of a parent’s basement.
Today, the company they built, which focuses on lead generation for online casinos, is headquartered in a six-story building in Malta and boasts five additional offices, with nearly 400 employees around the globe.
Catena’s expansion was powered by aggressive acquisitions and the ability to adapt quickly to a market where new legislation could rewrite the rules for doing business overnight.
With expansion came the challenge of staying flexible while managing a global workforce and a web presence encompassing over 5,000 domains. And, as a company that lives on the strength of its proprietary data, Catena had to manage internal security as rigorously as a real-life casino guards its chips. The goal was to find a B2E authentication solution that would balance security with scalability.
A Global Workforce in Need of Centralized User Management Launched Auth0 in 2 Weeks
Catena Media began a string of high-profile acquisitions in 2015, including AskGamblers and CasinoBonus360, capitalizing on a period of growth in the online casino industry. Each acquisition came with its own team, and managing them remotely became a time- and resource-consuming challenge.
Kurt Borg, Catena’s senior product owner for its internal management tool, describes the situation: “We had a lot of systems that people used to log into with different accounts. That is a nightmare to maintain and it’s a nightmare for scalability because new people join and need access... And when people leave that is the most delicate thing because you need to make sure that all access is closed. If you don’t have one centralized authentication system, there’s going to be a problem.”
To manage a workforce in flux, Catena turned to Auth0. Catena was attracted by how easily Auth0’s platform integrated with their existing G-Suite Applications using Single Sign On (SSO). As Borg remembers it, the initial implementation only took “a couple of weeks.”
With Auth0, Catena can instantly manage permissions from a single screen, which is a necessity for the company to safeguard its data and maintain legal compliance. Having centralized control over permissions is useful in smoothly bringing people into Catena, and it’s critical when it’s time to off-board employees. Says Borg, “When someone leaves, given that they have sensitive data in the system, I want to make sure that we can close all access with the touch of a button. I don't need to go onto seven different systems to make sure that all their access is blocked.” Borg estimates that changing permissions with Auth0 only takes “a couple of seconds” compared to the several minutes it used to require.
B2E Applications That Grow With the Company
As Catena Media’s operations have grown, so have their uses for Auth0. “I remember when this [internal management] tool started, we had 20 users, and now we have over 250. So the need for Auth0 grew as the application grew,” Borg recalls.
Now, Catena is extending their B2E uses to implement easy login for content management systems (CMSs) on all of their external sites. Auth0’s platform helps Catena manage the freelancers they employ to work on these sites. Borg explains, “We’re working on the WordPress Auth0 extension and basically unifying everything under one platform, one authentication system.”
Managing a remote freelance workforce means adding a new, carefully tailored set of permissions. “It's not just local users, but the possibility of also having remote users accessing the site. So this is why we definitely need something like Auth0 to be able to ensure that the authentication is centralized, especially when it comes to these CMS logins that are given to freelancers.”
Going forward, Borg sees the relationship between Catena and Auth0 continuing to deepen. “Basically, the more systems we have, the more centralized our authentication needs to be, and that’s how Auth0 is playing a role.”
Stable Authentication in a Dynamic Industry
Ask Kurt Borg about Catena’s plans for the next 12 months and he’ll laugh and say, “Ask me about the next 12 hours.” Though the company certainly has long-term aspirations, Borg says, “Planning ahead more than a month here is risky because we need to adapt quickly to the market and make sure that we’re constantly evolving as well. We might need to drop everything and work on a particular change because of legislation.”
Borg says that Auth0 frees Catena’s team to focus on staying agile. “When you know that something is being tackled by Auth0, you just need to make sure it's set up and it's set up correctly. And that can allow teams to focus their resources on other burning fires that you might have running around in the office.”
Auth0 provides a platform to authenticate, authorize, and secure access for applications, devices, and users. Security and development teams rely on Auth0's simplicity, extensibility, and expertise to make identity work for everyone. Safeguarding more than 4.5 billion login transactions each month, Auth0 secures identities so innovators can innovate, and empowers global enterprises to deliver trusted, superior digital experiences to their customers around the world.