Announcing Managed Deployments for Monocle

In order to support additional types of backends, integrations, and architectures, Monocle will now support an additional type of deployment: Spur Managed Deployments. This deployment will provide access to your Monocle Assessments via API call. Existing in-line decryption deployments will now be known as User Managed.

The Distinction

Monocle was designed with scaleable and distributed service deployments in mind. To accommodate this, Monocle Assessments were designed to be decrypted and verified at the edge without any need for an external API call or communications with Monocle servers. This flexibility came at the expense of complexity. Decrypting Assessments in-line requires more complicated integrations and servers that support modern encryption. This feature is still a key advantage of Monocle that will continue to be expanded and supported as our User Managed system.

As we expanded integrations for Monocle, it became clear, however, that decrypting Assessments in-line would not be possible for many common frameworks, content management systems (CMS), and managed hosting setups. In these cases, we need to make an external API request back to Monocle servers instead. By offloading key management and decryption, we can now support Monocle in even more environments.

Spur Managed deployments are integrated into the front-end in the same exact way as previous integrations. When an Encrypted Assessment is sent to your server, that server can make an API call to get the Decrypted Assessment and verify the result. This API call is protected with a unique secret issued at the time of Deployment creation. Our website now offers the ability to choose between deployment types at creation time.

When to Use Spur Managed Deployments

A Spur Managed deployment is best suited for users who:

  • Want the easiest, and quickest setup
  • Already do API calls from your backend for CAPTCHA services or otherwise
  • Are using a managed hosting or CMS (e.g. WordPress)

When to Use User Managed Deployments

User Managed deployments are still ideal for the more sophisticated users who:

  • Want end-to-end encryption
  • Manage their own backend code base
  • Do not want external API calls
  • Are leveraging distributed infrastructure where regional latency is important
  • Already have existing decryption libraries in your back-end for cookies and JWTs (e.g. Jose)

Keep Building

The most exciting part about this change is that Monocle will be able to go more places and integrate with additional frameworks. Stay tuned for additional updates on natively supported web frameworks and hosted solutions!

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