Understanding DDOS attacks is helpful to knowing why your favorite websites are down. It’s also helpful when putting plans in place to protect your own website.
SiteUptime provides network performance monitoring services that make sure that your website is accessible from many points of the internet.
These attacks may seem random and unpredictable at times. There seems to be little anyone can do to prevent the internet from “breaking” during the time when these hackers wreck their havoc.
What a DDOS attack is
“DDOS” stands for Distributed Denial of Service. These attacks happen when a number of hackers and their bots go to a site all at once. This rush overwhelms the servers and causes the service to fail.
During this downtime, there isn’t much web hosts, web developers, and individual users can do to bring the website back to working order. This is evident in the latest DDOS attack on Dyn, a widely used internet performance manager.
These attacks, sometimes coming from the “darknet” can cost just $150 for a week-long DDOS attack. This makes the chances of a DDOS occurring higher since these cheap prices are in the budget for most people with malicious intent.
Interestingly enough, these attacks do not typically occur as an attempt to steal data from websites. But, in some attacks, this information can become compromised.
Instead, DDoS attacks block others from accessing the site and the information they have on it. Favorite videos on Youtube, sending out orders on Etsy or viewing your personal bank account information can all be stopped with an attack.
Ensuring that your website is secure is a first step in ensuring that a DDOS attack doesn’t harm your business.
Botnets are a network of computers that have been infected by malicious viruses that remain hidden on the computer until an event like a DDOS attack occurs.
During this time, the “botmaster” is able to coordinate an attack and collect control of infected computers. Just one botnet could bring down a website.
However, these botnets may work collectively to target larger websites and networks in order to bring down the sites for a longer period of time and over a larger geographical area.
In the case of the Dyn DDoS attack, a collective of hackers and botnets worked together across the globe.
Since they were located in different areas, the botnets completely took out Dyn databases on the east coast of the United States.
This was accomplished by them targeting the Dyn servers that linked back to the East Cost but were located in other countries.
The Dyn DDoS attack
On October 21st, 2016, your access to many favorite websites may have suddenly stopped working.
Some of the websites that were taken offline caused massive problems. Twitter, Reddit, GitHub, Etsy, Imgur, PayPal, Spotify, Yelp, and the PlayStation Network reported problems stemming from the Dyn DDos attack.
Problematically, this attack stopped users from accessing their information and cost these companies hours of business. For internet-based companies, this can be devasting.
SiteUptime aids in internet performance monitoring to find out exactly how much downtime your web site endures.
This information, along with the other data our services gather, can help with your personal understanding of DDos attacks in relation to your business.
As some have noted, DDoS attacks typically target a single website. Usually, this happens when someone or some group has a personal reason to remove that company from full online functionality for an uncertain amount of time.
In the case of the Dyn attack, the unprecedented incident took out a host that allowed multiple large websites to function.
Surprisingly, for this DDoS attack, Network World reported that only 10% of the world’s botnets were involved in the Dyn DDoS attack.
This particular DDoS attack took out websites for the east coast for almost the entire day– beginning at internet “primetime” in the morning and a third wave of the attack occurring just after 4pm est.
What’s happening now
As for Dyn, all of the websites taken down by the October 21st attack have returned to full function. Users can once again enjoy their services and business owners can go back to providing goods and making their living.
However, this massive attack has called for a review of the way websites and servers currently run.
Improving the technology and coding behind websites like Dyn may be able to prevent a future attack, but staying one step ahead of massive networks of hackers is a difficult task.
The remedy to this problem is not very clearly, unfortunately. As with many things coming from the dark side of the internet, finding out motives and solutions will be difficult.
Dyn has produced a piece that outlines the impact, timeline, and possible solutions to remove the possibility of DDoS attacks from happening in the future.
While SiteUptime is absolutely on board with fighting for a solution, it is our biggest priority to keep you up-to-date with the correct information.
We help your business by monitoring the internet performance of your website to provide great service to your customers.
The DDoS attack on Dyn is a good example of why internet security is an important topic that should be at the forefront of any business owner’s mind. Security is important regardless of whether or not the company is small or large.
SiteUptime provides monitoring locations across the globe to test the functionality of your website from different points on the map.
With multiple locations, SiteUptime checks that problems like DDoS attacks don’t take down your website to different user groups.
Our locations are currently New York City, San Fransisco, Portland, Brazil, Ireland, Australia, and Singapore. Being across the globe is just another step we take to ensure that your website is monitoring and prepared for problems like DDoS attacks.