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Imagine walking into a restaurant and there is only one server on the floor, waiting on three other tables.

At first, the workload is manageable, but the lunch hour starts and soon dozens of people are being seated and waiting to place their order.  The server is still alone and bustling around trying to bring drinks and food to all the waiting customers until the pressure becomes too much.

The waiting food becomes cold, customers are irritated, and people leave.  The server becomes overwhelmed and breaks down, potential sales exit the restaurant, and the restaurant is held back from fulfilling its’ very purpose.

This illustration gives you a look at the stress and pressures a DDoS attack places on a website’s server.

A DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) attack is a cybersecurity hack that renders a website helpless which results in denying legitimate visitors service and costing companies thousands, and even millions of dollars in revenue.  This is caused by the website experiencing an overwhelming amount of faux traffic from a network of computers, hurting the website owners and its visitors.

An example of a popular app that potentially experienced a DDoS attack this past weekend on July 16 and 17 is Pokemon Go.  Two hacker groups, Poodle Corp and OurMine, claimed to have aimed fake traffic at the location-based augmented reality game, causing servers to repeatedly crash.

OurMine says they launched the attack in order to highlight the game’s security flaw to game developer Niantic, and to protect the company from future attacks.

Digital Attack MapTop, a project built by Google and Arbor Networks that visualizes the data from live DDoS attacks, says that hackers can buy a week-long DDoS attack from the black market for $150.  There are tons of websites that advertise renting out botnet services to launch a DDoS attack.

Digital Attack MapTop also reports that 1/3 of all downtime incidents are caused by DDoS attacks, and more than 2000 DDoS attacks happen daily to apps and websites around the globe.

Who are DDoS Culprits and Targets?

Banks, government websites, popular blogs, anticipated live-stream events, news sites and e-commerce sites are all different types of websites that have been the victims of DDoS attacks, which has resulted in the loss of customers, sales, and viewers.

Hacking activist groups like Anonymous have used DDoS as a means of showing their disapproval of corporations and government’s actions and beliefs.  DDoS attacks are also popular among the gaming community, being sent by competitive and sore players.

Unfortunately, a DDoS attack is one of the many hacks that hackers aim at undeserving people and companies simply because they were bored and wanted to exercise their hacking skills.  Yet a DDoS attack isn’t the worst type of hack one can experience.   For tips on how to counter a DDoS attack, visit eSescurity Planet!