How to Thwart DDoS Attacks from Hitting Critical Infrastructure

Valuable resources for reducing the risk of a distributed denial of service attack.

Vaughn Eisler

It is an unfortunate fact of life that bad actors target digital infrastructures during the greatest time of need, including the current COVID-19 pandemic situation we all find ourselves in. But that is exactly what happened when the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) was hit with a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack, right when millions of U.S. citizens were relying on the HHS website to get the most up-to-date information on the current outbreak.

In looking at the attack on HHS further, it appears that it involved overloading HHS servers with millions of hits over several hours. However, it didn’t succeed in its goal to significantly impact the agency’s systems. According to HHS spokeswoman, Caitlin Oakley, “On Sunday, we became aware of a significant increase in activity on HHS cyber infrastructure and are fully operational as we actively investigate the matter.”[i]

And it’s not just government agencies that are at risk. For example, this is also what supposedly happened when the German food delivery service Takeaway.com was targeted with a DDoS attack[ii], potentially disrupting critical delivery services when most restaurants are closed. Many security experts believe that these types of acts will continue as restrictions due to COVID-19 remain in place.

In fact, times of crisis are typically when cybercriminals strike. They are usually intended to take advantage of critical services in times of need. To help companies address this increased risk of typical attacks (such as DDoS) during this challenge time, we’ve compiled a number of articles on how to put the right security controls in place to protect your businesses’ from getting choked by bogus streams of DDoS-driven internet traffic.

Protect Your Infrastructure

Find out how you can use Equinix Performance Hub® on Platform Equinix® to protect your infrastructure

Download the Infopaper Now
ddos
Times of crisis are typically when cybercriminals strike. They are usually intended to take advantage of critical services in times of need.

Internet Peering + DDoS Mitigation = Resilient Security

Learn how Equinix Mitigation Peering can prove to be an effective defense mechanism against DDoS-attacks. By temporarily blocking all IP-Transit traffic while accepting direct traffic from selected ISPs/eyeball networks only, you can dramatically limit the volume of a DDoS attack.

How to Converse in Cloud: Cloud Security Controls

Security control points are where you deploy security applications and access security services from cloud and SaaS providers at the edge, proximate to users, end points, data and applications. Learn how to take the necessary steps to create agile, cloud-neutral security control points across a globally distributed colocation and interconnection platform.

Weaponizing the IoT for DDoS Attacks

See how direct, dedicated connections to partners and cloud providers make it considerably more difficult for DDoS botnets to reach you. You will also learn how to gain increased cybersecurity protection from proximate, private connections to DDoS security providers and a locally colocated internet service provider ecosystem at the edge.

Be Ready: DDoS Attacks Like You’ve Never Seen Are Coming

A credible defense really starts with a change in mindset. One that acknowledges the scope of the threat, the diligence needed to meet it, and a commitment to developing common and easily adopted security standards. Learn the three basic principles required to establish security guardrails at the edge and mitigate the impact of DDoS attacks.

DDoS Protection

By deploying a hybrid DDoS protection solution within network hubs on a distributed platform, an organization has the ability detect and mitigate DDoS attacks targeting on-premises and cloud applications. Enhancing a hybrid DDoS solution with a virtualized interconnection fabric provides visibility into all traffic, enabling detection and mitigation of all potential DDoS attacks via a singular solution.

Find out how you can place security controls at the edge, before a DDoS attack reaches your business.

Also, you may want to read the white paper Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) Protection.

 

[i] Bloomberg, “Cyber-Attack Hits U.S. Health Agency Amid Covid-19 Outbreak,” March 16, 2020.

[ii] DarkReading, “DDoS Attack Targets German Food Delivery Service,”  March 19, 2020.

Vaughn Eisler
Vaughn Eisler Director, Business Development, Security