DDoS Attacks Becoming More Prevalent and PowerfulOctober 5, 2016 12:28 pm
Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack have long been a scourge of the online world, with ‘botnets’ providing hackers with the means of disrupting the operations of websites for a variety of motives, including blackmail, revenge, or activism. Naturally, online gambling has often been a focus of these attacks as they present hackers with the opportunity to demand money in return to restoring normal service to the operations of gambling sites.
Of major concern is the fact the online gambling industry accounts for around half of all these malicious attacks, according to a “State of the Internet” study produced by Akamai Technologies, and the situation is likely to deteriorate further after the coding for a new, powerful type of DDoS attack was posted last week on security and hacking website HackForums.
The first demonstration of the Mirai malware code’s disruptive capabilities was seen in September after it forced KrebsOnSecurity offline for 24 hours, which is ironically a website dedicated to investigating cyber crimes. According to Akamai, the attack was twice as devastating as any experienced before, and as the company’s senior security advocate Martin McKeay told Krebs.
“Someone has a botnet with capabilities we haven’t seen before. We looked at the traffic coming from the attacking systems, and they weren’t just from one region of the world or from a small subset of networks, they were everywhere.”
That was just the start of it, though, and within a week two more attack were reported by Internet Service Provider OVH, with one of the attacks reaching a massive volume of 1.1 terabits-per-second (Tbps).
Needless to say, the online gambling world is now on high alert, especially as last year PokerStars, Neteller and Betfair all suffered attacks at the hands of hacking groups. New Jersey, too, was targeted in 2015, and in one instance cyber-hackers used DDOS attacks to threaten online casino operators with further reprisals unless they paid a ransom in Bitcoins.