What Happens During a DDoS Attack?

Distributed Denial of Service, commonly known as, DDoS attacks are one of the most common forms of cyber-attack today. In the last couple of years, DDoS attacks have significantly quadrupled. The average cost of a DDoS attack is $20,000-$40,000 per hour.

DDoS attacks come in all shapes and sizes. In 2018, GitHub was identified as undergoing the most massive DDoS attack, which involved a 1.35-terabit-per-second attack against the site. That is a phenomenal number and goes to show the sheer magnitude of the attack against the site.

What is a DDoS Attack?

DDoS is a cyber-attack that cripples the victim’s site, resulting in temporary or permanent damage to the site. The way this works is that the attacker will floods a website with unwanted traffic from multiple devices, rendering the website of no use to anyone.

The attacker aims for a DDoS attack to be successful in the first attempt. The attacker would inject malicious software on multiple devices, a process which is known as a botnet. The botnet can then be used to flood specific sites by pushing unwanted traffic on their server. This results in the site to go offline.

Why Do Hackers Opt for DDoS Attacks?

The simple reason why hackers mostly prefer DDoS attacks is because they instantly take down websites of all sizes. It doesn’t matter how much traffic a site can host; hackers could inject as much traffic as they please. The entire motive is monetary or to gain popularity.

DDoS attacks are like paid services. Hackers can advertise their expertise, and a buyer can request them to take down a specific site. They can charge for their services, and the buyer can set a price. A hacker could also blackmail the site owner for money and threaten to take down their site unless they pay a certain amount.

DDoS attacks are mostly carried out to gain competitive advantage over your rival. This is especially common when gaming online and in political events. The attacker could take down the political rival’s site and advertise false claims, manipulating the media and people.

How to know if I’m a victim of a DDoS attack?

Just before your site undergoes a massive DDoS attack and goes offline, there are several warning signs you must look out for.

If your site is taking time to load and is unusually slow for a while, it is possible that you might be experiencing a DDoS attack. Some hackers inject huge attachments in emails to slow down your site.

If you’ve been noticing your site’s overall network performance is slow for a while, it could be a DDoS attack. However, if your site has gone entirely offline, it’s evident that you’ve been a victim of a DDoS attack.

DDoS attacks can be hazardous for your online business. Always keep an eye for unwanted traffic and a massive flow of traffic headed your way without any logical reason.