When it comes to running a website, there are many things to think about, from choosing the right web hosting, to creating a platform that’s glitch free and user friendly. With hackers posing a great threat to many companies, protecting your part of the internet is also of paramount importance, but how can you keep unauthorised users away and prevent a DDoS attack?
What is a DDoS attack?
DDoS stands for Distributed Denial of Service and is a malicious attempt to make a website unavailable to users – which, of course, is one of the worst things that could happen to a business. While a basic Denial of Service attack typically involves bombarding an IP address from a single internet-connected gadget until it becomes overwhelmed, a DDOS is slightly different in that malicious traffic often comes from multiple sources across the globe making it much harder to block. There are many different types of DDoS attack, but with hackers literally holding sites hostage and making them unavailable until a large sum of money is paid, it’s crucial to up security.
What can I do to keep my site safe?
When a DDoS attack strikes there’s often little you can do about it until significant damage has been caused. Even well-known and technology advanced companies like the BBC have been caught out by such hacking techniques, which is why you must take preventative measures, including:
- Choosing the right ISP or hosting provider
If your web server is located in a hosting centre, your website has more chance of surviving a DDoS attack that if you run it yourself. This is mainly because staff are trained to deal with malicious activities and know how to respond quickly and effectively if something bad happens. What’s more, specific tools are used to identify and remove malicious packets, helping to clear your system up quicker than if you were to go it alone.
- Keeping emergency contacts nearby
Hackers don’t mess around. They aim to cause as much damage in as little time as possible, so be sure to keep the contact details for your ISP or hosting provider nearby in case you need to call them for help in an emergency. Of course, most hosting companies will be able to identify suspicious activities well before you even realise your site is under attack – but it doesn’t hurt to have those important numbers close to hand – just in case.
- Implement a few technical measures
If you run your own web server there are certain things you can do from putting a rate limit on your router to prevent your server from becoming overwhelmed to adding filters in order to drop spoofed or malformed packages from obvious sources of attack.
Using a Cloud-Based Security Provider is also a popular way to reduce the damage of a DDoS attack. Essentially, this sends traffic through a scrubbing centre where malware will be blocked and only legitimate traffic will end up at your site.
As DDoS attacks are becoming bigger and more sophisticated, you must always try to stay one foot ahead and make the most of the DDoS protection available.