What is a Denial of Service Attack?

Recently, social networking sites Twitter and Facebook were silenced by a Denial of Service attack that was targeted toward a blogger from Georgia. The attack left users without access to the sites for several hours on Friday. It also left them wondering just what is a “Denial of Service attack.”

Are you secure?

A denial-of-service attack (DoS attack) or distributed denial-of-service attack (DDoS attack) is an attempt to make a computer 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 concerted efforts of a person or people to prevent an Internet site or service from functioning efficiently or at all, temporarily or indefinitely. 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.

How can you (your network) survive a Denial of Service attack?

There is no surefire way to prevent a DDoS attack. However, a company can reduce its risk by limiting the number of connections that the Web server allows at any one time and configuring the firewall to block certain types of data that are used in DDoS attacks. It is recommended that your server’s software and hardware are up-to-date, especially those with features that can prevent flooding. Many major sites, even Microsoft, have been victims of DoS attacks, so it is not all that uncommon.

If you have questions regarding Denial of Service attacks and/or your network security, email us or call to set up an appointment for a free network evaluation (314) 544-0011.

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