The Covid-19 pandemic led to a rise in the number of Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks globally in the second quarter this year that saw a three-fold increase in comparison to the same period last year, a new report said on Thursday.
According to the global cybersecurity firm Kaspersky, the rise in malicious activity can be attributed to the impact of Covid-19, as both cybercriminals and their targets have had to reconsider their summer plans.
The number of attacks “Kaspersky DDoS Protection” detected and blocked in Q2 was 217 per cent higher than in the same period last year.
Also, the number of attacks in Q2 slightly increased in comparison to the first quarter this year.
A DDoS attack is an attempt to make an online service unavailable by overwhelming it with traffic from multiple sources.
This year, people have not been able to enjoy a normal holiday season as many regions have kept Covid-19 lockdown measures in place.
“This has left more people than usual still depending on online resources for both personal and work-related activities, making this summer a busy period for online businesses and information resources.
“As a result, we saw unprecedented activity in the DDoS market. And so far, there is no reason to predict a decline,” said Alexey Kiselev, Business Development Manager on the Kaspersky DDoS Protection team.
Usually, the number of DDoS attacks varies depending on the season.
The beginning of the year usually sees a higher amount of DDoS as it is a peak season for business. In late spring and summer, the number of attacks begin to decrease.
For example, the number of attacks in Q2 2019 fell by 39 per cent compared to figures for Q1 2019, and in 2018 the difference between the two quarters was 34 per cent.
However, the Covid-19 pandemic changed this scenario.
Broadly, the average number of attacks registered daily in the second quarter increased by almost 30 per cent compared to what happened in Q1.
Also, the biggest number of attacks per day was almost 300 in Q2 (on April 9), while in Q1, the record was 242 attacks.
Organisations must maintain web resources operations by assigning specialists who understand how to respond to DDoS attacks.
“They must also be prepared to respond out-of-hours, during evenings and weekends,” said the report.
“Validate third-party agreements and contact information – including those made with internet service providers. This helps teams quickly access agreements in case of an attack”, it added.