DDoS(Distributed Denial of Service) attack is one of the most common ways to bring down a website or an online commercial portal. Many reputed organisations, ecommerce sites, banks, financial institutions and even entire governments have been rendered helpless with these attacks. DDoS is a severe problem facing any and every website today and as such needs to be addressed.
What comprises a Distributed Denial of Service attack? Basically, a hacker’s primary aim is to bring down a website so that it crashes and is offline for a prolonged period of time thus reducing its uptime and resulting in losses in addition to general disruption. The idea is to cause chaos and confusion and is generally motivated by business rivalry, a vendetta against a particular social group or commercial organisation, or it could simply be a means for sadistic pleasure.
Sometimes, a DDoS attack is also used as a diversion tactic so that while the entire team of the website is busy trying to get the site back up, the hacker can easily use this time to steal sensitive information such as client details, passwords, banking details, etc. from the website’s database undetected.
Therefore, it is always recommended to take accurate measures against such attacks both to prevent them and to mitigate them after they occur. There are many DDoS protection services which provide a complete framework to secure your site against potential threats.
As we know, in a Distributed DoS attack the target website is overloaded with traffic and requests from multiple sources simultaneously. This is called a botnet which significantly reduces the website’s performance and makes it very hard to detect the source of the attack.
DDoS Protection Services
DDoS protection services include monitoring all the traffic for abnormalities, and singling out the anomalies. Then, the traffic in question is filtered to separate the good traffic from the malicious one, and only the harmless requests are allowed to reach the site’s host server. In this way, DDoS protection services prevent DDoS attacks.
These attacks can either be small attacks of traffic upto 1-2 GB, or increase right up to attacks of a staggering magnitude of a 100 GB. As such, it is of essence that DDoS protection companies have a strong infrastructure to hold up against the sudden spikes in payload and traffic which bring down the website. Most of the DDoS protection services come well equipped with state-of-the-art infrastructure and provide cloud based protection to accommodate large scale application layer attacks.
A good DDoS protection involves having a fast response time. As these attacks are meant to slow down considerably or totally bring your system to a grinding halt, it is extremely important that there is a quick response team to try and get the site back up as quickly as possible, thus thwarting the attack.
You should also keep in mind that DDoS attacks are of various types. The DDos protection service provider usually is able to differentiate between the different kinds of attacks so that it is in a good position to take quick actions for mitigating the concerned problem. Many a times, these service providers also have on-premise teams that collaborate with your IT teams to deal with the malicious entities.
DDoS protection providers have a good network of senior engineers that work efficiently and round the clock to constantly monitor the incoming traffic and provide a strong protection to the website. It is difficult to distinguish between a regular heavy traffic that is non malicious and spiked traffic due to an attack.
In order to avoid mistakes, and for better security, these service providers divert all the abnormal traffic to a black hole like space in the form of a DNS server, where the data is either stored for inspection or directly discarded. Only when they have thoroughly investigated the payload, do they allow the requests to pass through.
Also, after every attack, security logs are maintained which outline the entire threat and also analyse the reasons for the attack. After carefully studying these reports, the DDoS providers work on rectifying their previous mistakes and make their framework much more robust to handle potential future threats.
In this day and age, where most businesses carry out trade and activities online, a cyber attack is everyone’s worst fear. As such, measures like protecting your website using a firewall and employing a proper DDoS service provider to monitor and secure your site have become a must. For, a DDoS attack not only handicaps your business operations and results in losses, but also severely damages your reputation as potential customers can’t access your site easily. It is thus highly recommended that you appoint an experienced DDoS protection service vendor who keeps performing periodic checks and inspects your site for threats thus providing excellent security.