What is a DDoS attack, who launches them and how can you prepare your network?
Don't wait to get hit, prevent it!
Gone are the days of an organisation being targeted solely by elite hackers. Today, an aggressor needn’t be a hacker at all: the high school student across the street, a disgruntled employee or the customer who had an unfortunate experience with your organisation can all shutter your online availability with Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks.
What exactly is a DDoS attack?
Imagine an unruly individual that requests junk mail be sent to a victim’s home – a LOT of junk mail. The victim’s mailbox soon becomes overwhelmed. And as the mail continues to pile up the postal carrier becomes overwhelmed. Soon enough, the local post office, the regional post office and so forth, all become overwhelmed. Eventually the transit of all mail, both the good and the junk, becomes gridlocked.
A DDoS attack seeks to make a network unavailable by overloading the target network or machine with unnecessary requests. These attacks typically flood online systems, such as internet banking sites or online trading platforms, with vast amounts of data in order to overload them and take services offline.
Who launches attacks?
Thanks to the growing popularity of the cybercrime-as-a-service business model, the process of launching DDoS attacks is now effortless and nontechnical. Attack tools have become more available and less expensive—even free—and as a result, DDoS attacks have grown in frequency and scale.
The 2015 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR) shows that DDoS attacks are the most common form of attack against financial services businesses, accounting for 32% of all attacks analysed in the report. Arbor Networks’ recent Worldwide Infrastructure Security Report found that 57% of financial institutions have experienced a DDoS attack – the highest of any sector.
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