DDoS Attacks Increase In 2020

By 2nd December 2020Blog

Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks increased significantly in the third quarter of this year, the latest data from Cloudflare showed.

Tech Radar reported on the figures, noting that the number of DDoS attacks doubled between the first and second quarters of 2020, only to double again in Q3. This means that the volume of these kinds of cyber attacks has increased fourfold since before the Covid-19 pandemic.

The report from Cloudflare revealed that 56 per cent of all DDoS attacks to have taken place so far in 2020 occurred in the third quarter of the year.

However, while the volume of the attacks increased, The Daily Swig pointed out that the power of the attacks diminished in the three months from July to September.

That said, the news provider still pointed out that “even sub-500 Mbps assaults – accounting for nearly 85 per cent of attacks – can disrupt poorly protected web-facing assets”.

Ransom-based DDoS attacks have also been on the rise, Tech Radar reported. These have targeted organisations around the world, the data from Cloudflare showed, with these threats not necessarily resulting in a direct attack.

In some cases RDDoS attacks involve the hacker threatening a person or organisation with an attack that would bring their networks, websites or applications offline unless a ransom is paid.

CTO at Cloudflare John Graham-Cumming told the Daily Swig that it’s little surprise that hackers have taken advantage of the global pandemic.

“2020 saw a huge increase in online working, learning and shopping, so the bad guys and the DDoS attacks followed,” he stated.

Mr Graham-Cumming also revealed that there have predominantly been two types of RDDoS attacks reported in recent months.

“Some of those attacks are sophisticated with criminals doing reconnaissance on a company to know exactly where to hit them with an attack. Others are copycats that send out threats hoping to make some easy money,” he asserted.

If, like many other organisations, your business has transitioned to a more remote and online way of working, these are all threats that you need to be aware of.

As well as making sure your staff are appropriately trained in cyber security, you should make sure you have IT support in Doncaster or wherever you’re based, to ensure you have experts on hand to assist you should your business be the target of a DDoS attack, or any other form of cyber crime.

It’s not only businesses that have to be vigilant to prevent cyber attacks. As we reported recently, the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) in the UK successfully defended the country from 723 incidents between 1st September 2019 and 31st August 2020.

This equated to an average of 60 attacks per month, with the NCSC also revealing that some 200 of the attacks experienced during this period were related to Covid-19.

The NCSC also diverted many of its resources towards the health service this year to support it as it coped with the unprecedented challenge of the global pandemic.

Its work included scanning more than one million NHS IP addresses for vulnerabilities, with 51,000 indicators of compromise identified during this exercise and subsequently rectified.