The Threat of DDoS Attacks and Botnets

Today’s computer user must guard against a variety of potential security problems that range from theft of data by cyber criminals to destruction of property via Trojan horses, viruses, and other malicious software. Distributed Denial of Service attacks, which are usually abbreviated to “DDOS attacks,” are one of the most harmful types of attacks since they’re so effective.

What is a DDOS Attack?

A DDOS attack is effective because it’s launched from several different IP addresses against a single server. The purpose of the attack is to overwhelm a company’s server or bring down its websites. The insidious part of DDOS attacks is that the cyber criminal takes over the computers of unsuspecting victims and uses those machines to conduct a DDOS attack on a server.

Computer experts refer to these machines as “zombies,” and the cyber criminal responsible for taking over the computers combines them into a collective known as a “botnet.” In most cases, the owners of the zombie computers have no idea that their machines have been taken over by a Trojan program or hacker.

Frighteningly, cybercriminals have started using machines other than the computers most people rely on every day. Now, attacks can be made using any number of internet-connected devices like DVR players, smartphones, and even smart appliances. Protecting yourself against DDOS attacks means being aware of all the different devices that can be impacted by Trojan attacks and turned into zombie machines, as well as developing a plan for security protection.

DDoS Attacks Impact Businesses Large & Small

The concept of a DDoS attack is as old as the internet, and cyber criminals have been able to attack the world’s most powerful internet businesses via DDoS. Major companies like PayPal, Microsoft, and Apple, as well as legions of others, have been negatively impacted by DDoS attacks.

The first successful DDoS attack occurred in Minnesota at a university where hundreds of systems were impacted, and the school’s server was broken for several days. Cyber criminals took note of that successful attack, and it wasn’t long before the process was being used to bring operations to a halt at major companies like Yahoo!, CNN, and Amazon.

Over time, programmers bent on malicious activity have advanced the methods used during a DDoS attack, and cyber criminals have used it for everything from extortion to destruction of property. Cyber criminals have realized they could threaten to conduct DDoS attacks and extort money out of major companies in return for not conducting the attack.

Preventing DDoS Attacks

Protecting your business against DDoS attacks means actively implementing security features designed to prevent unauthorized access to your computers, devices, servers, and business technology. It’s much easier to prepare for a DDoS attack and prevent one than clean up after the attack has occurred.

Methods for preventing DDoS attacks may include running programs (or scripts) on your company’s servers that can detect when unauthorized access has occurred. Working with a technology partner like Magnet Solutions Group is also an excellent way to create an effective plan against a DDoS attack.

Keep Your Company Safe from DDoS Attacks with Magnet Solutions Group

DDoS attacks have the power to bring down the servers of multinational companies that have billions of dollars at their disposal, so protecting your business from the threat of a DDoS attack means taking cybersecurity seriously in all facets of your company’s technology. Whether you’re a brand new entrepreneur or a veteran business owner, Magnet Solutions Group can help you develop the best computer security plan for your business.