What would be the impact if the network system, service website application of any business, due to unforeseen reasons is not being able to be accessible or maybe very slow to respond to their staff or customers?
This comes down to the point that your network system might be under attack from DDoS and it is high time to protect your system from DDoS attack. Let us look at what are DDoS attacks, how they function, reason for DDoS attacks, how to recognize an attack and what remedial action can be taken to safeguard yourself from the attacks.
Understanding what is DDoS attack:
DDoS or Distributed Denial of Service attack is a malicious attempt that a hacker employs on an earmarked website application or server to hamper the flow of legitimate traffic. Here the targeted victim’s web resources are overwhelmed with more traffic than what its server or network can accommodate. The traffic can be in the form of thousands or millions of incoming messages in the form of superfluous requests. When the overall traffic i.e., normal and fake traffic exceeds the capacity of the targeted server, it will slow down in its responses to requests or ultimately crash thereby making it unavailable for normal user.
Simply put, we can say that it is equivalent to blocking of a road by any means in order to stop the actual users (regular traffic) from reaching their destination.
How do they attack:
The hacker infests multiple systems with malware and gains control over these systems which now acts as a slave machine or zombie called as bots. A network or collection of such compromised machines are known as botnet. The host computer (hacker) can now control the botnets remotely and is able to send commands through them simultaneously for DDoS attacks.
Many actual users of the bots are unaware of the presence of this type of malware in their computer as the normal operation of their computer was not affected.
When there is a DDoS attack on a website application or server, it is in fact difficult to differentiate the fake traffic from normal traffic because each bot is a legitimate device.
Why do they attack:
The reasons for attacks are rather extreme:
- To extort money by threatening to block the server during peak business hours.
- Damage a competitor’s business
- It is also used to settle personal rivalry or to disrupt online competitions.
- As a means of cyberwarfare by nations to disrupt all the critical services in enemy countries.
- Cyber vandals or bored teenagers who are looking for adrenaline rush or wanting to vent their frustration on any Institution or persons use DDoS attacks.
- We also have hacktivists who use DDoS attacks to express their disagreement on any matters ranging from Government, businesses or any current events as well.
How to recognize a DDoS attack
- We can spot the DDoS attack by the most obvious symptoms:
- Suspiciously large amount of traffic coming from a single IP address or IP range.
- Surge in requests to a single page or endpoint that is unexplained.
- The website is responding too slow.
- The website is not responsive.
- The user faces problems in accessing the website.
- The target might face internet connection issues.
How to safeguard from DDoS attacks:
It is advisable to go for DDoS mitigation services from Companies like AcstraSecure, and also employ standard endpoint measures. Patch the servers and train your users to recognize any phishing attacks.