One type of cybercrime that’s becoming a more significant problem in today’s digital age is distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks. What makes these attacks so dangerous, and how can you stay safe? This guide uncovers what you need to know about DDoS attacks. 

What Is a DDoS Attack?

This type of cyber-attack focuses on denial of service (DOS). The main intention of such an attack is to shut down an online service. A DDoS attack works much like an Internet traffic jam and involves the following steps:

  • Threat actors take control of devices by spreading malware to vulnerable users
  • They use these compromised devices to form a botnet
  • They get botnets to send an overwhelming amount of requests to a website or server
  • The extreme amount of requests causes massive disruption to the site

These attacks are just as concerning as ransomware, phishing, and malware attacks. Hackers can execute various DDoS campaigns, including SYN flood and application layer attacks. A SYN flood attack involves sending initial connection request packets to a server repeatedly and taking up all the server’s resources. Application layer attacks also target the server’s resources to cause massive disruptions. 

Dangers of DDoS Attacks

Why is this such a problem for modern businesses? As we rely on online services more than ever, you must be vigilant about cyber-attacks. Below are key reasons DDoS attacks are so dangerous. 

Increasing Threats

According to Cloudflare, hackers have executed thousands of these attacks since discovering the vulnerability. This vulnerability makes it easier for cybercriminals to launch DDoS campaigns at unprecedented levels. For example, recent attacks against Google’s infrastructure hit a record 398 million requests per second. 

As attacks grow larger in scale, the targeted networks face lengthy disruptions. This can result in business loss when legitimate users can’t access the website. 

Several Industries Are Vulnerable

Cybercriminals typically target gaming, telecommunications, IT, or computer software companies. Disrupting these sites can cause frustration for both the corporation and its customers. While these industries tend to experience DDoS campaigns based on recent data, other sectors are also at risk. 

E-commerce sites, healthcare portals, and education servers may be at the center of an attack if they aren’t prepared. In today’s digital age, it’s a huge problem if users can’t access these sites because of a DDoS attack. 

How To Stay Safe From Cyber-Attacks

Unfortunately, DDoS attacks are rising and becoming bigger than ever. Following the best cyber security practices can prevent threat actors from infiltrating your network. These practices include:

  • Using strong, unique passwords 
  • Implementing multi-factor authentication
  • Regularly performing software updates and data backups

You can also keep your network safe by installing a web application firewall (WAF). This helps filter out HTTP requests and monitors any malicious traffic that could lead to disruptions. Consult with a cyber security professional if you have concerns about keeping your business network free of hackers. 

 

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