What is a DDoS Attack?

Web Security

There was a time when Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks were fairly uncommon and only affected the most high profile websites. Unfortunately, those days are over. In the 21st century, anyone who owns a website should be concerned about DDoS attacks and the consequences they can bring about. So what exactly is a DDoS attack? The web hosting experts at GigeNET are here to tell you more about DDoS attacks and what they can mean for your website in language that’s simple to understand. Read on to find out more!
Distributed Denial of Service Attacks
The best way to understand a DDoS attack is through an analogy. Think of your website as a carry-out pizza restaurant.  During normal operation, the restaurant isn’t overly busy and patrons call in, order their pizza, and come pick it up when it’s ready. Now imagine a prankster calling in multiple times to place orders but never coming in to pay for it, or to pick up the pizzas that were ordered. This can be annoying and it makes it difficult to keep up your standard level of service for your legitimate customers, but it is fairly easy to mitigate because the false orders are coming from just one phone number. Block the number, and your problem goes away. This is known as a Denial of Service (DoS) attack, and it is the precursor of modern DDoS attacks.
While a single prankster is fairly easy to identify and deal with, imagine now that the prankster has enlisted the aid of a network of accomplices throughout the city. Now, the phone is ringing non-stop and most phone calls are unable to get through. These orders are coming from different phone numbers, making it impossible to block them all. It’s equally impossible to sort out the handful of legitimate orders that are lucky enough to get through the flooded phone lines from the fake orders. This is known as Distributed Denial of Service – a DDoS attack.
In a DDoS attack of a website, malicious actors can use various means to flood a website with requests to the point where systems become overloaded, preventing legitimate users from accessing it. A big DDoS attack can even crash a website, bringing it to a grinding halt. In the past, DDoS attacks have targeted corporations large and small, banks, government websites, even internet access on the Las Vegas Strip. Regardless of whether the attack is motivated by greed, revenge, activism, or boredom, the result is the same: excessive traffic prevents people from gaining access to the information and services they need. And while the true nature of DDoS attacks may be a bit more complicated than our pizza analogy, the fact is that these types of attacks can easily bring any unprotected website to its knees without warning.
How to Stop DDoS Attacks
When DDoS attacks occur, it can potentially cost a business thousands of dollars in lost business and reputation damage. DDoS attacks have even been used as cover for malicious intrusions, during which credit card numbers and other valuable information has been stolen. If you want to protect yourself and your users, it’s crucial that you take steps to prevent and mitigate the impact of DDoS attacks.
At GigeNET, we offer automated DDoS protection on all our servers so our customers (and their website users) can have peace of mind. Our automated DDoS protection works to detect and mitigate malicious attacks in real time 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. When attacks are detected, they are routed through our scrubbing center, sending malicious traffic away from your servers where it can’t do any damage.
If you’re interested in finding a solution to DDoS attacks, GigeNET has what you’re looking for. Take a look at all the server options we offer and click “Order Now,” call us at (800) 561-2656, send an email to [email protected], or fill out our online contact form if you have any questions. You and your users deserve the best protection possible; get in touch with GigeNET today to stop hackers in their tracks!

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