DDoS Attacks Rise As Smart Devices Offer An Opportunity For Hackers

The size and volume of distributed denial of service -DDoS attacks have quadrupled in the past year as hackers take advantage of mobile devices.

The proliferation of devices has provided cyber wrongdoers with new avenues of attack, Tech Week Europe reports. New research from cloud services provider Akamai has found that the total number of DDoS attacks rose by 22% along with a staggering 339% year-on-year increase in average attack bandwidth.

Multi-vector attack methods are behind the increase, accounting for more than half of all attacks – rising 9% from last year. This is due to more widely available toolkits and a ‘DDoS for hire’ criminal industry that is continuing expand, says Akamai.

But a wider variety of devices on which to launch assaults, with cable modems, smartphones and embedded devices, is also making life easier for hackers.

Cyber criminals are also looking to exploit Linux systems, using vulnerable web-based applications in order to strengthen botnets.

According to John Summers, vice president of Akamai’s security business unit, the size and volume of DDoS attacks have gone through the roof.

He said: “In the third quarter alone, Akamai mitigated 17 attacks greater than 100 gigabits-per-second, with the largest at 321Gbps.”

He added: “Interestingly, we witnessed none of that size in the same quarter a year ago and only six last quarter. These mega-attacks each used multiple DDoS vectors to deliver large bandwidth-consuming packets at an extremely high rate of speed.”


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