DDoS attacks explained

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By Robin Dishon, Senior Writer, ESET


A new DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) attack on a prominent website is making headlines today (Aug. 24).

Just days after the Department of Justice demanded visitor data for an anti-Trump website from the web host company DreamHost (which rejected the request), the company has reported a DDoS attack. DreamHost, which is home to more than 1.5 million websites, says its mitigation efforts have kept the majority of its sites from being affected as the attack continues. 

The company has also drawn attention lately for reportedly hosting a new edition of the Nazi Daily Stormer website.

DDoS attacks such as this take advantage of unprotected computers to create “botnets.” Botnets are collections of millions of infected computers that are used maliciously for attacks. 

The last time botnets made headlines, it was because last year’s massive DDoS attack on Dyn (an internet infrastructure provider), knocked out access to Amazon, Netflix, eBay and Twitter, to name just a few.  

This attack was unusual not only for its scale – blocking services for millions of online users – but because internet of Things devices such as DVRs and alarm systems were used to create the botnet.

Infographic showing what a botnet is and how it works

Because unprotected computers can be used to create botnets, you can help prevent future DDoS attacks—by ensuring your own computers and devices have effective internet security installed.

ESET security solutions use advanced heuristics and analysis for effective botnet protection, blocking programs that may try to take over your computers as well as detecting and destroying other threats.

Learn more about how you can become part of the botnet solution and enjoy safer technology 24/7.