Denial-of-Service (DoS) and Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) are two different, yet similar, types of cybersecurity attacks that online businesses are at risk for.
During a Denial of Service attack, a computer sends an enormous amount of traffic to the victim's computer. The web resource is unavailable to users by flooding it with more requests than the server can handle. During that attack period, regular traffic will be slowed down or completely interrupted.
There are various ways to perform a DoS attack. For example, an attacker may exploit vulnerabilities in the target application to cause it to crash. Another example of a DoS attack is when the attacker sends many spam requests to a server to overwhelm it.
There are also several types of DoS attacks, including
A DDoS attack is basically a multiplied DoS attack. Instead of using a single computer to send an attack, the attacker uses various internet-connected devices to launch a coordinated attack against the target. The more devices the attacker uses, the greater the possibility of taking the target system offline.
DDoS attacks are usually performed using botnets. Botnets are networks of computers that the attacker controls which can be built using cloud computing systems. However, cybercriminals commonly build botnets from the systems compromised during their attacks.
There are three main categories of a DDoS attack:
As mentioned before, DoS and DDoS attacks are very similar. However, there are key differences.
The following table lays out these differences in an easy-to-read manner:
Regardless of which type of attack, there are various reasons that a cybercriminal may want to take businesses and websites offline.
Typically, the reasons fall into one of the following categories:
Regardless of the reason, a DoS or DDoS attack can do significant harm to a business or website.
Multiple types of cybercriminals could conduct a DDoS or DoS attack. It could be an individual hacker or a hacking group trying to get a large payout from a company.
Anonymous is a hacking group that targets companies that they disagree with politically. In recent years, major websites and services like Wikipedia and Paypal were victims of these groups.
The best way to protect against DDoS and DoS attacks is to deploy anti-DDoS software that identifies and blocks malicious traffic before reaching the mark. However, scrubbing network traffic can be difficult, especially if the attack is highly sophisticated. Experienced DDoS attackers use traffic that is similar to legitimate traffic, which means the scrubber could miss it. Even worse, the scrubber could mistake legitimate traffic for the fake ones, doing the attacker's job for them.
There are some essential security practices that businesses and websites can do to help avoid attackers' attention.
If the site is continuously up-to-date, it helps mitigate the risk of attackers exploiting vulnerabilities.
Additionally, the risk of the site becoming a bot network is significantly reduced if it is updated.
DoS and DDoS attacks exploit issues like Slowloris (a DDoS attack software that allows one computer to take down a web server.) To resolve these issues, enabling a robust security plugin is recommended.
Websites have logs that help identify malicious behavior on the site. These logs allow you to find the exact source of a cyber attack.
It is essential that you enforce strong password policies for every user. Additionally, it is crucial to add two-factor authentication to your website. These security policies make it more difficult for attackers to hack user accounts.
Increasing authentication policies may also lessen your consumer's concerns, as 92% of Americans have concerns regarding their privacy on the Internet.
DoS and DDoS attacks are similar in that they are usually going for the same end but with different methods of attacking. As we can take away from this article, the key differences between them are:
Regardless of how the attack is executed, your site is shut down for a long time, and it can cause serious system malfunctions. Every second your system is down is lost revenue and costly recovery processes.
Speak with the Accountable HQ team today to learn how your business can protect against DoS and DDoS attacks.