DDoS Attacks – Short-Lived, but More Powerful

Posted on September 25, 2014 by .

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DDoS (Distributed-Denial-of-Service) attacks still present major problems to big companies.

According to a report released recently by NSfocus’ research team, the DDoS attacks have become relatively shorter compared to before, but way more powerful.

The results of the remediation company’s research are based on information from real cases of DDoS attacks throughout the first half of 2014.

The short duration of the attacks allows them to occur repeatedly in a short period. The volumes, on the other hand, are much higher. The research team concluded that a large part of the attacks lasted less than 30 min.

According to the report, the most targeted websites are latency-sensitive, such as e-commerce and hosting services, online gaming, etc.

In the meantime, the DDoS traffic volume went up to 4 GBPS. More than half of the attacks were above 0.2 Mpps in the first six months of 2014, which indicates a 16% increase year over year.

Here are a few more numbers you may be interested in:

  • Over 2% of the attacks were started at a rate above 3.2Mpps
  • Attacks against ISPs have jumped by 87.2%
  • Attacks against enterprises increased by 100.5%
  • Attacks targeting online gaming sites are up by 60%
  • The highest frequency of DDoS attacks endured by a single victim is sixty-eight.

All of these changes can be based on various factors – evolution of network environment that brings the DDoS battlefield to a brand new level; tech developments, which allow hackers to exploit new tools constantly; DDoS pattern changes for higher profit.

The firm has been keeping track of the DDoS attacks in the past years and has observed numerous changes in the behavior of the hackers. Since the trends cannot be predicted, security experts advise the companies in the targeted sectors to take a defensive approach.

Hacker’s Favorites – Fourth Place for DDoS Attacks

According to the security report for 2014 by another big security company, Check Point, DDoS take the fourth place of all the creative ways hackers can attack an organization. 23% of all the attacks last year were DDoS.

This statement agrees with the report that DDoS remains high volume. Keith Bird, Managing Director at Check Point, suggests that it would be only logical to assume that the IT security sector is dealing with the DDoS attacks more effectively than before, since their lifespan is getting shorter. Although this might be quite encouraging, companies should keep on applying strong defenses to make sure that the ongoing trend would not be reversed.

Another security firm that follows the DDoS trends closely is Arbor Networks. According to their research, 90.6% of the DDoS attacks last less than an hour. Additionally, the firm concluded that an average attack over 10GB lasts approximately 1 hour 38 minutes.

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