Let’s pretend you’re organizing a party to celebrate your recent promotion. You invite all of your coworkers and friends.
But before they arrive, a slew of other guys, complete strangers to you, show up, enter the party uninvitedly, consume all of the food and beverages, and take to the dance floor, leaving you with no place to put your invited guests and no food or drink to serve them.
Isn’t it strange? When your company’s IT infrastructure is targeted by a DDoS (Distributed Denial-of-Service) attack, this is what happens. Still haven’t figured it out?
Let’s make things a little easier for you. Now is the time for a love story.
Let’s pretend Romeo wants to speak with Juliett. He sends a text message to her. Juliett receives the message, blushes, and responds, “I received your message, Romeo, let us speak.” Everything is so cherry for Romeo when he receives this message. Romeo and Juliet are now having a lovely conversation. It’s a wonderful life.
Juliett, on the other hand, is a popular girl in town. Juliett is getting a truckload of texts after some jealous, heartbroken, and mischievous fellas leak her number to everyone.
They had used up all of her phone memory, and she is no longer receiving Romeo’s texts.
Now, Romeo, the one who really wants to talk to her, is irritated, and he comes to the conclusion that cell phone towers are working against them. Romeo is depressed. It’s a bad life.
It’s now up to you to make the connections and draw the analogies. A DDoS attack is an attempt to make a machine or network resource unavailable to its intended users by flooding the target machine with heavy external communication requests, causing it to either be unable to respond to legitimate traffic or to respond so slowly that it becomes essentially unavailable.
For example, if Bank X’s website is subjected to a DDoS assault, it becomes inaccessible to Bank X’s customers, giving them inconvenience by preventing them from accessing online payment or other service choices, as well as harming the bank’s reputation and resulting in short-term financial losses.
If you run a professional website, a DDoS assault will have the following consequences:
Hmm. The essential notion is clear to me. I believe I’ve figured out how to deal with it.
Really? You haven’t grasped a single concept. At this moment, a child can protect his diapers from spoilage better than you can protect your website from a DDoS attack.
To fight against a DDoS assault, you must be aware of the entire danger environment as well as the numerous methods in which your website/server might be attacked.
Every business, no matter how big or little, is now a possible target:
Until recently, launching a DDoS assault required some level of technical expertise, and attackers tended to target the largest and most vulnerable targets.
Twitter was the target of a denial of service assault on August 6, 2009. (DDoS). Nobody could access their Twitter account for two hours that morning.
As a result, they wouldn’t send any new tweets or interact with other Twitter users. While such attacks are well-publicized, the amount of attacks targeting small businesses for a variety of reasons is less well-known.
A recent example is the arrest in 2011 of the CEO of ChronoPay, Russia’s largest online payment processing firm, for employing a hacker to DDoS a rival firm.
So, if you thought your company was invulnerable and not large enough to be targeted by DDoS, it’s time to reconsider. the most well-known corporations and government agencies
But not right now. A vibrant underground market shamelessly advertises simple-to-use DDoS tools and “botnets for hire” that may help a teenager sitting in his jammies attack your website even before he drinks his first cup of coffee.
This means that anyone with a personal or political vendetta against someone else can readily sponsor or launch an attack.
Attacks are becoming larger and more complex. Let’s start with the “larger” aspect. High-bandwidth attacks, also known as volumetric attacks, flood the network with illicit botnet traffic.
Over the last few years, the diversity and scale of volumetric threats has increased dramatically.
In 2012, the average magnitude of DDoS attacks climbed by 27%, and they now often exceed 1 Gbps, a threshold that had previously served as an unofficial benchmark for major attacks.
Then there’s the ‘complexity’ of the attacks. Enterprises have recently been the target of application-layer assaults.
Rather than flooding the network with a volumetric network-layer attack, the application-layer attack targets applications within websites, such as forms that require the site to conduct information queries.
Because these assaults appear to be valid requests, they are significantly more difficult to detect. Furthermore, compared to classic DDoS attacks, which flood a network with traffic, these attacks require significantly less bandwidth.
In the absence of such massive traffic spikes, affected organizations may be unaware that they are being targeted and mistakenly blame sluggish websites on more benign causes like application or system faults.
Because application-layer assaults do not necessitate large volumes of traffic, attackers need fewer resources, and they may be carried out on a single computer, leaving websites inaccessible to genuine visitors.
Ok. I’m aware of the seriousness of the situation. However, to protect myself, I have already installed a firewall and other security systems.
No. You’re using a pocket knife to defend off a bazooka onslaught. Existing infrastructure components such as firewalls and intrusion prevention systems are rendered worthless by attacks that flood the network with illicit traffic.
To compound the matter, because these devices (firewalls, etc.) keep track of every session made between an Internet client and the accompanying server, they become DDoS targets themselves.
During the attack, more than 40% of people who used these devices encountered serious firewall and/or IPS failure as a direct result of DDoS attacks.
This is becoming absurd. I’m feeling even more helpless than Thakur in the film ‘Sholay.’ What am I supposed to do now?
It’s not a problem because Jai and Veeru are already here. Jai will assist you with the necessary technical infrastructure, while Veeru will assist you with the financial side. Veeru is the first to speak.
The first step in planning for a DDoS attack is to factor DDoS threat risk into your IT security budgets. Learn how much it costs to have a service outage.
In other words, calculate the hourly cost to your company if your website is down or disabled as a result of an attack.
Each company’s hourly cost of downtime will be different, however it will often include the following elements:
Then there’s the technological stuff. Defending against Denial of Service attacks usually entails using a combination of attack detection, traffic categorization, and response technologies, with the goal of blocking illegal traffic while allowing valid traffic.
The following is a list of prevention and response tools:
Application front end hardware works in the same way as the frisking you go through before entering a movie theater does.
Before traffic reaches the servers, clever gear is installed on the network. As data packets enter the system, it analyzes them and classifies them as priority, regular, or risky.
Intrusion-prevention systems (IPS) based prevention: Intrusion-prevention systems (IPS) are effective if the attacks are correlated with signatures.
An intrusion prevention system (IPS) analyzes traffic at a granular level and continuously monitors the traffic pattern for any anomalies. It allows normal traffic to pass through while preventing DoS attack traffic.
IPS that work on content identification, on the other hand, are unable to prevent attacks that combine high-bandwidth and application-based attacks. A tiered technique can be utilized to stop both of these sorts of attacks.
DDS-based defense: As previously stated, IPS are only effective if the attacks are correlated with signatures.
However, a current trend among attackers is for genuine content to be used with malicious purpose.
(Like your next-door neighbors who put on a happy front in front of you but are secretly envious of your kid getting into an IIT.)
It’s DDS to the rescue!
A DoS Defense System (DDS), which is more focused on the problem than an IPS, may stop connection-based DoS attacks as well as those with genuine material but harmful intent.
Blackholing and sinkhole: When a DNS or IP address is blackholed, all traffic to that address is directed to a “black hole” (null interface, non-existent server, etc).
It can be adjusted by the ISP to be more efficient and avoid impacting network connectivity.
Sinkholing sends traffic to a valid IP address, which examines it and rejects malicious requests. Sinkholing is ineffective in the majority of severe attacks.
Clean pipes: All traffic passes via a “cleaning center” or “scrubbing center” using proxies, tunnels, or even direct circuits, which separates “bad” traffic and only sends good traffic to the server.
Finally, after going over everything, keep in mind that tracing the source of a DDoS assault is difficult since attackers can hide their tracks using a variety of tactics.
They can use a phony IP address, zombies, proxies, or an underground network to attack.
This is why internet businesses should always guarantee that they are effectively protected against DDoS assaults so that their operations do not suffer unnecessarily due to malevolent attackers. As the saying goes, prevention is preferable to cure.