DDoS attacks are a serious and ongoing threat to modern businesses. They can lead to significant financial and reputational damage. It’s therefore vital that all businesses are well-prepared with DDoS mitigation tools and potentially services as well. With that in mind, here is a straightforward guide to what you consider when choosing them.
Your first aim should be to prevent yourself from falling victim to DDoS attacks. You should, however, always work on the assumption that your defenses will be breached. That means you need a plan in place to deal with them.
That plan will almost certainly require the use of DDoS mitigation tools and/or services. Like all emergency equipment, you need to have this set up and ready to go before you use it.
It may also be advisable to set aside a budget for dealing with the repercussions of DDoS attacks. For example, you may need to increase your use of the public cloud to compensate for the effects of the attack. There will be costs involved with this. It may be safer to have a reserve fund to cover these than to have to worry about the effect on your cash flow.
The foundation of your entire defense against DDoS attacks is robust cybersecurity. All DDoS-specific precautions need to be layered on top of this foundation. If they are not, they will be significantly less effective. In fact, they may be rendered completely ineffective.
Having a connection to a public cloud can make it possible for your business to stay operational during a DDoS attack. This is another reason why public cloud services can be so useful as part of a disaster recovery strategy.
If you really don’t want to (or can’t) use a public cloud service for any reason, then it would definitely be helpful to have some way of increasing your bandwidth in an emergency. Having access to extra bandwidth gives you more breathing space while you work to fix the problem.
Content delivery networks are distributed networks of servers. Their main use is as a means to host content near its users. This allows the content to be delivered with minimal latency. The distributed nature of CDNs gives them a lot of in-built resilience to DDoS attacks.
Attackers are forced to choose between focusing their resources on a small part of the network or distributing them. If they choose to attack a single part of the network, the rest of it will stay operational as normal. If they choose to distribute their resources, they will have less of an impact.
Regular firewalls and web application firewalls (WAFs) are both vital to protecting against DDoS attacks. Regular firewalls protect the security of the network itself. They analyze traffic and, where necessary, filter or block it.
WAFs protect the security of applications. WAFs basically try to identify what the traffic is aiming to do. If it concludes that the behavior is malicious, it will block the traffic.
DDoS scrubbers are DDoS mitigation tools that aim to detect and block traffic from DDoS attacks before it reaches the actual network. If this is not sufficient, routers can be used to divert the traffic to another area. This would typically be a holding pen either internal or at a DDoS mitigation service provider.
DDoS mitigation services can monitor traffic to identify early warning signals of a DDoS attack. If an attack does happen, they can take steps to deal with it. If the sources of the malicious traffic can be quickly identified, the DDoS mitigation service will block them.
If, however, the DDoS attackers have hidden their tracks, the DDoS mitigation service will manage the traffic until the sources can be found. This generally requires the traffic to be rerouted to scrubbing centers. These will work to identify what traffic is genuine and what traffic is malicious.
The genuine traffic will be forwarded to the client’s network. The malicious traffic will be scrubbed. Before it is scrubbed, however, it will be analyzed. The data collected will be used to help identify the sources of the attack. Once the sources are identified, they will be blocked.
These are the key DDoS mitigation tools and services available at the current time. Unfortunately, cybersecurity is never “set and forget”. Cyberthreats are continually developing, and cybersecurity has to stay in front of them.
It can therefore be helpful to sign up for specialist consultancy. This can ensure that key information is always pushed to you promptly.
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