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Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Denial of Service? What is it, and how can we defend against it? - Executive Overview

I've been asked to write a higher level version of some of my blogs.  Apparently my writing is too technical... 

According to Prolexic (now part of Akamai), DDoS, or Distributed Denial of Service attacks are on the rise, and getting smarter. 

If you rely on an internet facing website or service to either bring in, or communicate with customers, there's a good chance that service will be disrupted or greatly impacted in the near future.

A Distributed Denial of Service attack is a method used by an individual or group that wishes to do harm against your company by essentially making your website inaccessible. New attack tools are readily available on the black market, and reports indicate that attack traffic is up 133% over this time last year.

By sending large quantities of traffic requests to your company website (tens of thousands of hits per second), the attackers basically overload the website's ability to respond and service legitimate customer requests.  If your website is down, you are not reaching customers, and not generating revenue.    Even a mild attack has the effect of slowing down your website to the point where customers may not want to use it. Corporate reputation may be at risk as a cause of such attack.

The primary way that businesses can and are protecting themselves against these DDoS attacks is through the use of Content Deliver Networks.  

(for a more technical overview, please see my blog on CDN: Content Delivery Networks in the Context of Security).

A Content Delivery Network, such as Akamai/Prolexic augments your corporate website service by mirroring your website through many webservers distributed globally on their own network.  Should a Distributed Denial of Service attack be launched against your website, the effect of that attack is spread across many, many servers. The result is a greatly reduced impact on the service provided to you customers. In most cases, the net slowdown is almost immeasurable.

 Introducing a CDN service to front your Critical Corporate websites not only makes sense, but will greatly enhance your Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity programme.

 Should you find your website under attack right now, please look into the following service from Akamai.

Emergency DDoS Protection Service to Stop a Cyber Attack


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