Denial of Service Attacks Essay

Denial of Service Attacks Essay

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Denial of Service attacks (DoS) or Distributed Denial of Service Attacks (DDoS), have been around for many years, but only in the past few years have the frequency and magnitude of these attacks increased. They are a significant problem because they can shut an organization off from the Internet for extended periods of time and little can be done to stop them. DoS attacks occur when computer resources become unavailable to legitimate users after being exhausted by false requests for information (Houle and Weaver 1).

This research paper is a comprehensive look at DoS attacks, including information about their history and development, how to detect them, and what measures should be taken to prevent large amounts of damage.

History

The first documented DoS activity dates back to 1999. The methods and vulnerabilities are constantly changing, but the result is always the same. The following are some of the more important events:

1999

July-Widespread deployment of DDoS attacks based on a tool known as "trinoo" via various RPC related vulnerabilities. Many of the initial deployments were done manually, with intruders carefully testing and selecting hosts.

August-New DDoS tool known as Stacheldraht found in isolated incidents. Program added encrypted communications between the attacker and host systems.

December-Program known as Tribe Flood Network 2000 (TFN2K) was released and included features designed to make attack traffic more difficult to detect and trace.

2000

February-The now infamous DDoS attacks against websites like Yahoo, eBay, CNN, and eTrade took place, leaving the sites offline for hours.

April-Packet amplification attacks using nameservers became popular.

August-The Trinity DDoS tool...


... middle of paper ...


...extenuating TCP SYN flood attacks.
  • IPv6-the next version of IP, already implemented in some of the newest Internet ready devices. IPSEC and congestion control (ECN) functionality are already put into service. Increased address space will decrease the effectiveness of attacks scanning for vulnerable machines.


    Conclusion

    Sites can never be 100 percent safe if they are connected to the Internet. The ideal system is up to date on patches, has a firewall, is monitored, has all unneeded services disabled, and has up to date antivirus software installed. The ideal site also has an incident response capability and knowledgeable staff. Unfortunately the Internet is a highly interdependent world. There is no silver bullet to stop DoS attacks or vaccine to prevent them, but increasing awareness is the first step to successfully combating the problem.

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