How Luno stays up even when Bitcoin is down
Cryptocurrency exchange Luno has become something of a staple in the space, particularly in South Africa.
Being able to trade, buy and exchange Bitcoin for cash was rather useful while the world was losing its collective mind at the sky-high prices of Bitcoin, with everybody that had an internet connection hoping to make a quick buck.
What always surprised us about Luno was how resilient it was. It didn’t matter if Bitcoin was worth a dollar or ten thousand, Luno stayed up and we were curious to find out how.
The short answer is cloud computing – more specifically Amazon Web Services (AWS) – but even that is a complex answer once you start scratching at the paint. To find out more we asked Luno’s chief technology officer and co-founder Timothy Stranex to give us a deeper look at the tech that drives Luno.
“Unlike traditional financial companies, Luno’s technology forms a core competency of the company. It has been built from the ground up using modern techniques, a strong focus on security, and leverages AWS cloud,” Stranex explains.
“We leverage the various services provided by Amazon such as EC2, RDS, S3, Redshift, and others to achieve a high level of scalability, reliability, and security – allowing our platform to handle millions of customers easily. Using these services allow us to focus on our core business without needing to ‘reinvent the wheel’.”
The CTO says that without AWS the firm would have to hire a full-time engineer to administer its database and do simple tasks such as backing up data. Instead of doing that, Luno uses managed solutions such as Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) and Amazon Relational Database Service (Amazon RDS) to automate backups. Simple and cost-effective.
Using the cloud also means that Luno doesn’t have to invest in costly infrastructure and can instead lease it from Amazon. This makes scaling and being agile to the market less difficult.
“At the rate in which Luno has grown, scalability that is offered by the AWS cloud is essential as we have the ability to elastically scale our services globally without consuming precious engineering resources. As Luno expands the team globally, the company will be rolling out more deposit methods and country localisation,” Stranex tells us.
The CTO also says that security was top of mind and Amazon presented Luno with a security conscious solution that allowed them to offer users safer transactions.
Cloud computing really is a great way for a company to switch from investing in infrastructure to focusing on your business while firms like Amazon handle the technical side of things.
Of course we must say that using the cloud differs from use case to use case and we’d recommend speaking to an expert before embarking on your businesses journey into the cloud.