Wreaking Havoc: DDoS Attacks Are Growing More Frequent, Sophisticated and Costly
Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) attacks, which do not discriminate, have been used to target financial services, healthcare, technology, media and entertainment, software, gaming and a host of other industry sectors. According to Neustar’s Worldwide DDoS Attacks and Protection Report, 73 percent of organizations have suffered a DDoS attack, and 85 percent of attacked businesses have been victims of multiple assaults. Almost half of all DDoS targets run the risk of losing more than $100,000 per hour, with one-third exposed to potential losses of more than $250,000 per hour.
How do those numbers add up over the duration of an attack? According to research by the Ponemon Institute, the average cost of a DDoS attack last year was $4.7 million. Moreover, greater than half of all targets have also suffered a cybersecurity breach while undergoing a DDoS attack.
While the number and severity of DDoS attacks has risen every year, this past year has seen the rise of mega attacks targeting major sites. Twelve attacks have been recorded achieving greater than 100 Gbps throughput, of which five exceeded 200 Gbps.
The most notorious and largest of recent attacks were executed by the Mirai botnet, a collection of more than 100,000 compromised Internet-connected video cameras, consumer routers and other devices that occurred in the fall of 2016. Mirai’s victims included the Republic of Liberia’s Internet infrastructure, as well as U.S. DNS service provider Dyn, which resulted in the inaccessibility of several high-profile websites such as Netflix, Spotify and Airbnb. When one can’t binge-watch their favorite show, listen to R&B classica, or book an affordable room in Paris or Barcelona, something has to change. More on that later.
Cybercriminals have many DDoS-enabled weapons in their quiver. While the Mirai attack directly targeted Dyn’s DNS service, DNS services can also be interrupted by a method known as spoofing, or cache poisoning, whereby corrupt DNS data is used to divert Internet traffic away from the correct server. In fact, one in five DDoS attacks last year were DNS-based.
DNS servers can also be used to generate DDoS traffic with DNS amplification. The cybercriminal sends a DNS query with a forged IP address. The DNS server responds to the forged IP address belonging to the target of the attack. The result is that small queries trigger large responses that can overwhelm the target of the attack.
So, how do companies solve the challenge of quickly detecting and mitigating the pernicious threat of DDoS attacks?
Telehouse recently announced that it is offering Verisign’s Distributed Denial of Service Protection Services to its customers through a reseller relationship with Telehouse’s parent company KDDI. The services will assist Telehouse’s financial services and enterprise customers, as well as internet service, cloud and content service providers that comprise the Telehouse Interconnect to protect their most critical assets and reduce the risk of DDoS attacks. These services detect and filter malicious traffic aimed at disrupting or disabling internet-based services.
The Verisign DDoS Protection Services are a cloud-based DDoS solution that can be deployed quickly and easily, ensuring comprehensive protection against network and application layer attacks. Protecting Telehouse customers against Layer 3, 4 and 7 attacks, Verisign’s OpenHybrid™ architecture allows organizations to seamlessly integrate their existing on-premise devices and cloud-based platforms with the Verisign DDoS Protection Service, for faster detection and mitigation of DDoS attacks.