There are many different types of cyber security threats that plague the Internet of Things, but none are nearly as devastating to online business as a DDoS attack.
A DDoS attack is an attempt by an attacker to overwhelm an online service or website with a barrage of online traffic from multiple sources that makes an online service unavailable for a short period of time.
An example of the catastrophic effects of a DDoS attack, let's take a look at Raul. Raul is the owner and founder of an online startup that sells its office supplies to local retailers.
His business relied on its customers ability ot use its website to buy and order the supplies they needed as smoothly and efficiently as possible, and due to the nature of Raul's company as a startup, the website only had the minimum amount of bandwidth necessary for his expected consumer base.
An attaker, wielding the power of a botnet of zombie computers, decided to attack Raul's website by overwhelming its systems with thousands of fake orders and preventing the website from accepting the real orders of hundreds of actual customers.
Attack Node 1: ACTIVE Attack Node 2: ACTIVE Attack Node 3: ACTIVE Attack Node 4: ACTIVE
This lack of bandwidth was largely unimportant, but soon overnight it was transformed into the achilles heel of the company.
This attack ruined Raul's business and cost him tens of thousands of dollars. This almost pushed Raul into economic ruin, but he luckily was supported by friends and family during this time. While DDoS attacks can impact anyone such as Raul despite many of the safeguards that are put in place to prevent them, there are still things that can be done to prevent them.
There are several things that Raul can be done to prevent DDoS attacks from being as devestating as they are. 1. The owner of a website can overprovide bandwidth so the site can handle sudden spikes in customers or viewers.
2. They can set up a DDoS playbook that provides back up plans in the case of a DDoS attack that allow the website to continue to function even in the midst of a DDoS attack. 3. If the owner of a website owns the server then he or she can defend the networks perimeter by putting in regulations for what IP's are allowed to access the site. If the owneer does not own the the server then he or she can contact the ISP and they can handle it.
Raul kept all of these things when he created a new startup a few years later. Now, with a safer, faster, and more reliable website, Raul's busniness is booming and has made Raul a very wealthy man by keeping him safe against all sort of cyber security threats!