Research highlights threat of DDoS attacks

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Distributed denial of service attacks seem to be increasing in size and frequency.

The threat businesses face from distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks has been highlighted in a new report comprising data from all over the world.

Arbor Networks used information on issues including worm propagation, security events and vulnerability disclosures to create its new Atlas Threat Portal, which showed that in excess of 2,500 DDoS attacks occur across the globe every day.

In addition, they have increased in size and complexity, even in the short period since the start of 2013. The average size of a DDoS attack has gone up by 43 per cent and 46.5 per cent of such incidents are now over 1Gbps.

There were also double the number of attacks between 2Gbps and 10Gbps and a 41.6 per cent rise in attacks over 10Gbps.

Dan Holden, spokesperson for Arbor Networks, said: "This portal allows us to share global threat information with the community at large, to feature our team of expert analysts, highlight their research and integrate the latest news and social activity that is going on across the industry."

DDoS attacks aim to slow down or crash servers by deliberately overloading them. They are increasingly being used by malicious organisations keen to cause disruption rather than just steal data.

"Good, old-fashioned pointless mischief and mayhem is being driven by the easy availability of bots/botnets for hire and easily distributed crowd-sourced attack tools," said security analyst Jeff Wilson.

It comes after research by Neustar found that 22 per cent of UK companies experienced a disruptive attack of some sort during 2012, with 37 per cent lasting more than 24 hours.

However, despite this risk, more than 20 per cent of the poll’s respondents admitted they have no system in place to protect them against DDoS.

Secure online hosting and document scanning solutions such as those available from Dajon could help to prevent major disruption being caused by DDoS incidents.

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