The top myths associated with a DDoS attack

Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks overwhelm targeted servers and internet networks with large volumes of malicious internet traffic. These attacks rose in frequency and internet bandwidth in the earlier days of this year.

Now with DDoS protection improving in a manner that helps protect companies, individuals and other entities alike have decided to opt for protection methods that are not only advanced in nature but also stop a DDoS attack at its very point of origin.

What are the myths associated with a DDoS attack?

Experts from a DDoS Protection Service provider based in New York city have revealed the following myths that have often been associated with a DDoS attack:

Content Delivery Networks offer complete protection

This is a common misconception regarding protection offered by the Content Delivery Network (CDN) as the only protection against DDoS attacks, and this is not the case. The CDN might be able to protect the website and the data being distributed from it across the globe for firms, but it usually does not protect assets being used to help websites and firms connect to the internet.

Among these assets are any data or content stored on the website’s own server, especially origin source files distributed by a CDN on a usual basis, which leaves the website at the mercy of a DDoS attack. Experts recommend firms to invest in in-house protection ensuring access to source data is never impacted by a DDoS threat.

Cloud-based DDoS mitigation is the only thing firms need for protection against DDoS attacks

Most organizations are of the belief that they are protected quite well against DDoS attacks through an on-demand cloud protection service. However, a lot now realize that always-on protection solutions are much better, like a hybrid solution including an always-on, on-premises component and the like are needed to deliver effective protection against DDoS attacks.

The drawback with most cloud based DDoS protection services is that their approaches are based on the detect-and-redirect method, a legacy method that might not work all the time.

This on-demand architecture cannot prevent downtime from happening, and it is capable of getting an attacked organization back online after it nearly fell impacted by an attack. With attacks increasingly becoming complex, smaller DDoS attacks are just as damaging as the large ones. On-demand solutions are hence missing the target in this regard.

Cloud-based solutions are usually slow to react and often are not able to protect vulnerable services from the impact of DDoS attacks. They have a negative effect on the continuation of business. These solutions often leave firms paying for downtime and at the mercy of more attacks.

A majority of DDoS attacks can bring down a whole company

Though it is among the biggest attacks that still make headlines, a majority of DDoS attacks are not big enough to knock down a specific server, a website, an app or a complete service (range of services).

These attacks are surgical in nature and are quite small in volume as well as duration. Traditional legacy DDoS solutions may not be able to even notice them and fail to react in time to effectively reduce their impact and even eliminate them.

Research reveals that a vast majority of DDoS attacks now have low threshold, brief duration and are increasingly used for the purpose of extorting money.

Firewalls can protect against DDoS attacks

Firewalls have not been proven to be effective against any kind of DDoS attack. Instead, they become the actual target of an attack. In theory, modern firewalls keep track of the flow of internet traffic so they can deliver their kind of protection effectively and on time.

THey have limits on internal memory, and the processing resources needed to keep track of all this information makes them an easy target for DDoS attacks. Attackers can overrun these resources with specific attacking methods, hence taking down the whole network.

Traffic limits are enough for protection against DDoS attacks

Some companies try their own in-house created self defense mechanisms against DDoS attacks. They usually set alarms when there is an unusual spike in web traffic. However, these alerts do not do much to prevent a DDoS attack or be able to differentiate between a sudden burst of legit traffic and attack traffic. They just monitor the situation.

Companies still have to decide what action they must take i.e. either they issue their own warning and take the attacked service offline completely, or they call their very own DDoS attack and footprint scrubbing service.

By the time reducing the effects of a DDoS attack starts using this mechanism, within ten or twenty minutes, the attack will have done its work leaving a path of destruction in its wake.

More than three seconds of downtime, going up to a minute, is catastrophe for a website and other internet based services, costing a monumental amount of money. The IT team will be there to help, but there is a chance that the attackers may have carried out more attacks. This is where the system is left exposed, and a lot of crucial information is thus lost.

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