Case Study

How eToroX built its cryptocurrency exchange entirely on Google Cloud

Woman using Mobile device
Tel Aviv

For more than a decade, eToro has been at the forefront of fintech, pioneering disruptive and exciting ideas in the finance industry.

Millions worldwide use the Israeli company’s concept of social trading to match their portfolio decisions with those of experienced traders, at a fraction of the cost of a traditional wealth manager. And since it was founded in 2007, eToro has progressed from trades in foreign exchange to commodities, indices, stocks, and a wealth of other assets. So the venture into cryptocurrencies was a natural next step.

“At the beginning of 2018, we decided to create eToroX, a new and innovative division, dedicated to cryptocurrency trading,” says Aviad Diamant, Director of IT Operations at eToroX. “At its core is a cryptocurrency exchange, offering individual traders a safe, secure, regulated platform that constantly evolves to bring investors the latest trading possibilities and concepts. It’s a place where people can make the most of the excitement and dynamism of cryptocurrency markets, while keeping track of their assets at all times.”

Aviad and his team set out clear priorities for the eToroX project. It needed to deliver new features at speed, scale easily and automatically, and provide the strong security and stability that investors expect. Rather than use the established eToro infrastructure, which was a combination of on-premises and cloud servers, the team decided to build eToroX entirely in the cloud.

“eToroX is all about connecting the financial world with new technology, at the cutting-edge of innovation in fintech,” says Aviad. “The easiest, fastest, smartest way to do that is to build with a stable cloud solution that we can trust, to give us the transparency and support we need.”

The brief

Companies in disruptive industries need to balance fast-moving change and innovation with the reliability, safety, and service that customers expect. This is particularly true in the finance sector, where speed, security, and trust are especially important. eToroX is designed to serve a wide range of clients, from thousands of individual daily traders to a small number of major investors who access the platform less frequently, but at a much greater scale, often requesting large numbers of quotes and executing many simultaneous transactions. eToroX needs to match that highly variable demand without compromising on the speed and stability of its service.

“We need security, stability, and scalability, and we need to make development easy, with low maintenance overheads and favorable pricing,” says Aviad. “The decision to build on Kubernetes was easy. From there, we ran a benchmark of the managed solutions available with major cloud providers. Google Cloud offered the lowest maintenance overheads, a good price point, and it was the most accessible. Google Cloud was the option that made it easiest for us to get to work straight away.”

eToroX teamed up with the cloud experts at DoiT International to design, implement, and run the new solution. “We really appreciate the professionalism of DoiT, from its swift onboarding process, to its ability to support us at any level, at any time, and for every requirement,” says Aviad. “We work with DoiT as an ongoing partner to make decisions and plan ahead. The team helps connect our needs to the solutions that Google Cloud can provide.”

What we did

With Cloud Storage, eToroX takes advantage of a pay-as-you-go storage solution that combines the power of Google Cloud performance and scalability with advanced security and sharing capabilities. Meanwhile, it uses Compute Engine to spin up and run virtual machines as needed and Cloud SQL for a fully managed relational database solution that frees up time to focus on application development.

Using Google Kubernetes Engine as a managed solution for orchestrating containers and Container Registry to store docker containers, eToroX scales quickly to match and even anticipate demand. “Out of the box, GKE comes with the ability to autoscale to different parameters,” says Aviad. “We were able to take that to the next level by building our own metrics and rules. For example, we can anticipate spikes in market activity by tracking the number of orders in the system, or the number of concurrent users. If there are 500,000 orders open, the system scales up automatically, ready to execute those trades.”

The eToroX team uses Cloud Security Command Center to oversee, maintain, and optimize the security of the platform, as well as Stackdriver to monitor the company’s own Security Operation Center. “Google Stackdriver monitors everything in real time,” says Aviad. “Our security team follows that data and issues alerts when it sees suspicious or unusual activity.”

The result

From scratch to fully operational in less than a year!

It took less than a year to develop eToroX from scratch to the fully functional final version. “We did it all 100% in the cloud,” says Aviad, “We even used G Suite for its email and messaging features, as well as to manage our domains, users, and permissions.”

Moving forward, eToroX is exploring more managed services on Google Cloud, including using BigQuery as a business intelligence (BI) solution. The company plans to use it as its BI infrastructure to store and manage all data. “Google Cloud has been involved in almost every step of this project, helping us build the platform, optimize it, and plan ahead,” says Aviad. “The service from Google Cloud Israel has been incredible. Google Cloud tools got us to where we wanted to go, and the team made it easy.”

Aviad Diamant, Director of IT Operations, eToroX
We really appreciate the professionalism of DoiT International, from its swift onboarding process, to its ability to support us at any level, at any time, and for every requirement,” says Aviad. “We work with DoiT as an ongoing partner to make decisions and plan ahead. The team helps connect our needs to the solutions that Google Cloud can provide.

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