On January 2nd 2016, the BBC suffered from a cyber-attack that targeted all of its applications. This attack resulted in unavailability for at least 3 hours. It was also claimed that this DDoS Attack was over 600 Gbps – the largest DDoS attack ever recorded. The group claiming responsibility for the attack was New World Hackers and various articles have been published with one of the group members providing interviews about the incident. One of the main claims was that it was performed using Amazon by bypassing Amazon’s security measures and using administrative privileges.
Not long ago, the Radware Emergency Response Team (ERT) noticed significant and increased usage of the Tsunami SYN Flood attack against a large customer. This activity strongly indicated the presence of a service related robot and Radware security researchers managed to obtain a sample of the malware binary used to generate these DDoS attacks. The malware was then isolated and used in a controlled environment to study its behavior and its different attack vectors.
DDoS-for-hire has been around for a while. Until recently, “booters” were known as paid online services used by gamers to initiate DDoS attacks against their opponents to gain a competitive advantage.
Now, DDoS attacks can be launched by anybody with a credit card and a motive. No longer exclusive to gamers and hackers, a competitive DDoS-for-hire market has expanded nearly to the point of commoditization.
Modern cyberattacks are sophisticated and are often launched over long periods of time. The complexity of these attack campaigns can result in attack detection and mitigation algorithms becoming less effective. This in turn, can create an increased need for talent and staffing as well as drive large processing needs for service providers and large enterprises.
A clear trend in the security scene these days is the change in attacker profile. Computer hacking and DDoS attacks are no longer reserved for the small group of individuals who are familiar with the “bits and bytes” of underlying technologies. Today’s attackers may very well be ordinary computer users.
This is a result of an abundance of tools out there which do not require technical abilities surpassing the normal usage of a program, or simply the supplying of a credit card. A recent example is the Anonymous-OS which has been recently released. This is an Ubuntu- based OS which is pre-installed with all the necessary, and easy to use tools for the novice Anonymous member.