What is a DDos attack


A Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack is an attempt to make an online service unavailable by overwhelming it with traffic from multiple sources. They target a wide variety of important resources, from banks to news websites, and present a major challenge to making sure people cant publish and access important information.


Types of Attacks

DDoS attacks come in many different forms, from Smurfs to Teardrops, to Pings of Death. Below are details about the types of attacks and amplification methods found on the map:

Four common categories of attacks


TCP Connection AttacksOccupying connections

These attempt to use up all the available connections to infrastructure devices such as load-balancers, firewalls and application servers. Even devices capable of maintaining state on millions of connections can be taken down by these attacks.


Volumetric AttacksUsing up bandwidth

These attempt to consume the bandwidth either within the target network/service, or between the target network/service and the rest of the Internet. These attacks are simply about causing congestion.


Fragmentation AttacksPieces of packets

These send a flood of TCP or UDP fragments to a victim, overwhelming the victim’s ability to re-assemble the streams and severely reducing performance.


Application AttacksTargeting applications

These attempt to overwhelm a specific aspect of an application or service and can be effective even with very few attacking machines generating a low traffic rate (making them difficult to detect and mitigate

Two ways attacks can multiply traffic they can send.

DNS ReflectionSmall request, big reply.

By forging a victim’s IP address, an attacker can send small requests to a DNS server and ask it to send the victim a large reply. This allows the attacker to have every request from its botnet amplified as much as 70x in size, making it much easier to overwhelm the target.

Chargen ReflectionSteady streams of text

Most computers and internet connected printers support an outdated testing service called Chargen, which allows someone to ask a device to reply with a stream of random characters. Chargen can be used as a means for amplifying attacks similar to DNS attacks above

check out our post on how to help prevent DDos

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