To establish connectivity with other users and devices, almost anything that interfaces with the internet depends on the accuracy, integrity and availability of the Domain Name System (DNS). Most online transactions and data movement are critically dependent on DNS services.
As such, DNS is an important point of security enforcement and a potential point in the Cyber Kill Chain for many cyber-attacks. Organizations are beginning to recognize this and are using DNS security mechanisms as a first line of defense for preventing or mitigating online threats.
The National Small Business Association (NBSA) recently released a report revealing that half of all small businesses have been the victim of a cyber-attack – and the cost of dealing with these attacks has skyrocketed to $20,752 per attack. In about a third of attacks, the victim’s website was taken down, often for days. The impact of such outages cannot be measured by the immediate lost revenue alone, as the long term impact of the harm to your reputation and customer loss cannot be easily calculated.
With the holiday shopping season quickly approaching, internet retailers are gearing up for an onslaught of web traffic – which is great, as long as they have the right measures in place to keep their customers safe and satisfied.
Even one hour of downtime due to a website outage or a malicious attack can have significant impact on a retailer’s reputation and revenue, especially during the holidays, a time which the National Retail Federation says can add up to 40 percent of an online retailer’s annual revenue. With some large e-commerce sites earning millions each day during the holiday season, even a few minutes of downtime can lead to financial losses in the tens of thousands of dollars, not to mention customer frustration.
We often hear from companies with cloud applications that ensuring the availability of critical web-based services and applications is a key requirement for enhancing user experience and engagement. After all, customers often leave company websites if they have to wait for them to load, which could result in lost revenue and brand value — all because of something that could be easily avoided.
As businesses continue to move critical operations online, distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks are increasing in frequency, sophistication and range of targets. In a 2011 Verisign study, 63 percent of respondents reported experiencing at least one attack that year, while 51 percent reported revenue loss as a result of downtime from the attack. Those numbers are undoubtedly higher today as the size, frequency and complexity of DDoS attacks continue to grow. Mitigation against these types of attacks is challenging and generally requires layered solutions across data centers and the cloud management. The success of these attacks and their ability to damage a company’s infrastructure, revenue and reputation is indicative that many IT managers still haven’t found the right protection formula to proactively mitigate them.