How can a DDoS attack on a single company slow down the entire internet?

ernard

The news wires have been reporting the largest DDoS attack in history is taking place today against a company called Spamhaus. I haven't noticed much of an impact, but the news reports suggest that the effect is being felt by companies including Netflix. How can a single attack have such a wide impact?

Topic: Security
Answer this Question

Answers

3 total
jimlynch
Vote Up (20)

Here's a good overview of DDoS attacks.

Denial-of-service attack
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Denial-of-service_attack

"In computing, a denial-of-service attack (DoS attack) or distributed denial-of-service attack (DDoS attack) is an attempt to make a machine or network resource unavailable to its intended users. Although the means to carry out, motives for, and targets of a DoS attack may vary, it generally consists of the efforts of one or more people to temporarily or indefinitely interrupt or suspend services of a host connected to the Internet.
Perpetrators of DoS attacks typically target sites or services hosted on high-profile web servers such as banks, credit card payment gateways, and even root nameservers. This technique has now seen extensive use in certain games, used by server owners, or disgruntled competitors on games such as Minecraft and League of Legends. The term is generally used relating to computer networks, but is not limited to this field; for example, it is also used in reference to CPU resource management.[1]

One common method of attack involves saturating the target machine with external communications requests, so much so that it cannot respond to legitimate traffic, or responds so slowly as to be rendered essentially unavailable. Such attacks usually lead to a server overload. In general terms, DoS attacks are implemented by either forcing the targeted computer(s) to reset, or consuming its resources so that it can no longer provide its intended service or obstructing the communication media between the intended users and the victim so that they can no longer communicate adequately.

Denial-of-service attacks are considered violations of the IAB's Internet proper use policy, and also violate the acceptable use policies of virtually all Internet service providers. They also commonly constitute violations of the laws of individual nations."

Christopher Nerney
Vote Up (16)

It's because the attackers worked their way upstream from the original target, as this ITworld article explains:

 

The attackers ultimately targeted Tier 1 providers, which operate the networks at the core of the Internet, and Internet Exchanges (IX), critical nodes located around the world that connect large networks like those of Google, Facebook, Yahoo and pretty much every major Internet company.

 

 

henyfoxe
Vote Up (12)

And cue conspiracy theories from The Guardian in 3.....2......1........conspiracy theory!

Ask a question

Join Now or Sign In to ask a question.
Yelp has agreed to pay US$450,000 to the U.S. Federal Trade Commission to settle charges that the company accepted registrations to its services from children under 13 through its apps.
Apple on Tuesday began offering an additional security protection for iCloud account users, a move the company made following the theft of nude photos from several celebrities' accounts last month.
Hackers purportedly representing Anonymous hit Boston Children's Hospital with phishing and DDoS attacks this spring. The hospital fought back with vigilance, internal transparency and some old-fashioned sneakernet. That – and a little bit of luck – kept patient data safe.
A Citadel variant has been used against several Middle Eastern petrochemical companies, marking the first time the financial malware has been found in targeted attacks against companies.
Hackers evaded security systems for a year-and-a-half at a hosting center that processed payment cards for Goodwill Industries, using the same type of malware that struck Target and other major retailers to steal card data, according to the charity's software vendor.
The U.S. Congress is unlikely to pass legislation to end the National Security Agency's widespread collection of U.S. telephone records before leaving Washington, D.C., on a two-month break.
Customers cringe every time they hear about a bank, retail or healthcare hack that puts personal or financial data at risk. Today's hackers are after much more that credit card numbers, though -- and most firms are powerless to stop them.
While the capability to remotely wipe data from lost or stolen mobile phones may help CIOs sleep at night, it may be an outdated approach to BYOD security.
Cisco is bringing technology obtained through last year's acquisition of Sourcefire to its firewalls to enable threat-focused security for enterprises.
Wyvern securely rolls five programming languages into one.
randomness