What are DDoS Attacks and How Can You Protect Your Business?

Depending on the size and type of your business, a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack can either be a minor annoyance or a major crisis with devastating and costly impact. With DDoS attack, the perpetrators can disable the essential processes or online presence of its victim. An IT specialist at Bedrock IT emphasized that the consequences of a DDoS attack can be long-lasting and even permanent. As such, it is crucial for businesses to implement necessary steps to counter this cyberthreat or mitigate its effects.

In order to lay out a solid defense, it would help to understand what a DDoS attack is and how it can potentially impact your business.

What is a DDoS Attack?

Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack is a cyber attack aimed at an network or an online server. Basically, it attempts to overwhelm a specific web server’s network capability with voluminous communication requests coming from numerous malware-infected systems. Bombarded with nonsense requests, the receiving server may slow down, crash or become unable to accept and respond to legitimate requests. To launch a DDoS attack, the perpetrators use bots or malware-infested devices and computers that send a heavy volume of requests towards their target.

Why DDoS attack is a serious concern for businesses?

Businesses must not take the threat of DDoS attack lightly. First of all, this tactic is relatively easy to implement. Although most DDoS attacks are hatched by cybercrime syndicates, this tactic isn’t hard to learn. If an 18-year-old can launch DDoS attacks on their tax authority or a 16-year-old can create a tool that can be used to implement an attack, what else can an organized cybercriminal not do?

Aside from being simple, it’s also an inexpensive hack. Botnets used for DDoS attack can be purchased at an unbelievably cheap price at the black market. There are DDoS-for-hire service markets that specialize in this trade. In fact, you can find botnets an incredibly low price (just around $150). This botnets are capable of launching a week-long attack and can shut down a small business’ online presence. This raises concerns for the possibility of widespread DDoS attacks in the future.

Businesses should also worry about the possible outcomes from DDoS attacks that include:

  • financial impacts resulting from lost revenue, productivity, and data,

  • interruption of business operations,

  • irreparable damage on reputation, and

  • additional cyberattacks (cybercriminals use DDoS to conceal other fraud activities or network breaches).

DDoS attacks can also be launched against any type of business. Its perpetrators do not discriminate victimes, which means every business is a target. Some industries that have become a frequent target of DDoS attacks are the healthcare, hospitality, governments, and education sectors.

The ease of execution, potential outcomes, and indiscriminate targeting make DDoS attacks a major threat for businesses. With this in mind, it is important to implement measures to prevent these attacks.

How can you protect your business against DDoS attack?

  • Develop an IT security policy that covers all your security needs and establishes a solid defense strategy.

  • Lay out a concrete action plan on how to prevent attacks, or in case of a successful attack, how to mitigate its impact.

  • Ensure that everyone in the organization is aware of and practices IT security measures and strategies.

  • Monitor the traffic on your network and identify any malicious connections that might compromise your system.

  • Maintain a bandwidth capacity well-above your minimum requirements to avoid an attack from overwhelming and crashing your site.

  • Keep your hardware, software and all other IT assets up-to-date.

  • Institute measures that will minimize the access of users connected in your network. The use of personal devices on your premises poses security risks.

  • Implement strict password policies to secure your systems.

  • Ask the help of a network security specialists to do a complete assessment and evaluation of your system.

The importance of network security in today’s business landscape cannot be understated. With widespread hacking and cyber attacks, you don’t want to fall victim to these unscrupulous players.

DDoS is just one of the many threats that pose risk to your business. But basically, the measures you’ll implement to prevent a DDoS attack can greatly help beef up your defenses against all other cyber threats. So, if you haven’t started working on your cybersecurity, you better start now

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