DOS And DDOS - What's The difference

Online knowledge base Wikipedia suffered outage at the weekend following a Distributed Denial Of Service (DDOS) attack. The company released a statement: "Wikipedia was hit with a malicious attack that has taken it offline in several countries for intermittent periods. The attack is ongoing and our Site Reliability Engineering team is working hard to stop it and restore access to the site."

The reports of the incident show confusion about two types of denial of service attack.

A Denial of Service attack uses only a small number of attacking systems (possibly just one) to overload the target. This was the most common type of attack in the early days of the Internet, where services were relatively small in scale and security technology in its infancy.

However, nowadays, a simple DoS attack is often simple to deflect as the attacker is easy to identify and block. One notable exception here may be industrial control systems, where equipment may have a low tolerance to bogus traffic, or may be connected via low bandwidth links that are easily saturated.

In a Distributed Denial of Service attack, the attacker enlists the help of (many) thousands of Internet users to each generate a small number of requests which, added together, overload the target.

These participants may either be willing accomplices (such as attacks initiated by loosely organised illegal "hactivist" groups) or by unwitting victims whose machines have been infected with malware.

A full explanation of these types of cyberattack and how to prevent them can be seen at the National Cyber Security Centre's website here.

more news

Cyberattacks: Preparing For The Inevitable

It is generally accepted that it is when, not if, large organisations will be the target of malicious cyberattacks. The importance of being prepared has been laid out in a blog post Sweat In Peace, Don't Bleed In War, written by Meredydd Hughes, a former UK chief constable with substantial crisis management experience.

read more

Varonis Blog Highlights 110 Cybersecurity Statistics

Cybersecurity company Varonis has issued its predictions for the forthcoming year with a blog post entitled 110 Cybersecurity Statics For 2020. The blog states that cybersecurity issues are becoming a day-to-day struggle for businesses. Recent trends and cybersecurity statistics reveal a huge increase in hacked and breached data from sources that are increasingly common in the workplace, like mobile and IoT devices.

read more

UK To Go On The Cyber Offensive

The UK Government is about to launch a new proactive and offensive cybersecurity team that will wage cyberwarfare against hostile nation-states and online crime organisations. It would be naive to believe that the UK has not launched cyberattacks against third parties, but the killing of Qassem Soleimani has brought this out into the open.

read more

Are You Ready For Iranian Revenge Cyberattacks?

Following the killing of Qassem Suleimani no-one can be sure of what military action Iran will take, but experts agree that its cyberattacks will increase against countries and governments it sees as hostile.

read more