Bigger and badder than ever

DDoS attacks are an IT professionals’ nightmare – they can knock out applications that generate revenue and facilitate communications, or even more fundamentally, take down entire networks. What’s worse, they are becoming increasingly sophisticated, large and frequent as cybercriminals get more aggressive and creative.

All businesses must now expect DDoS attacks, rather than consider them remote possibilities, and prepare accordingly. One recent study found that in just one year, a whopping 38% of companies providing online services (such as ecommerce, online media and others) had been on the receiving end of an attack.

Such attacks have moved up the network stack over time, climbing from network attacks in the 1990s to session attacks and application layer attacks today. Now, application attacks at layer 7 represent approximately half of all attacks. We’re also seeing attacks go even further, into business logic, which often exists as a layer above the OSI model.

Protecting your business

So how do we protect our content and applications and keep them running in the face of attacks? With attack traffic reaching new heights (the record set in 2014 was 500Gbps), few organizations have sufficient bandwidth to hold up to such magnitudes. Increasingly, businesses are having to turn to scrubbing services to handle such volumetric attacks.

You can think of a scrubbing service as a first line of defense against DDoS attacks. Such services process your incoming traffic and detect, identify and mitigate threats in real time. The clean traffic is then returned to your site,  keeping any attacks from reaching your network and enabling your businesses to stay online and available. Your users are left blissfully unaware.

How scrubbing works

For more detail, let’s take a look at how this process works at the new F5 scrubbing center here in Singapore, which is a key piece of our Silverline DDoS Protection hybrid solution. Part of F5’s fully redundant and globally distributed global security operation center (SOC), the facility is built with advanced systems and tools engineered to deal with the increasing threats, escalating scale and complexity of DDoS attacks. 

F5 determines the best scrubbing routes for each segment of traffic and automatically directs traffic through the cloud scrubbing centers for real-time mitigation. As traffic enters a scrubbing center, it is triaged based on a various traffic characteristics and possible attack methodologies. Traffic continues to be checked as it traverses the scrubbing center to confirm the malicious traffic has been fully removed. Clean traffic is then returned through your website with little to no impact to the end user.

Silverline DDoS Protection provides attack mitigation bandwidth capacity of over 2.0 Tbps and scrubbing capacity of over 1.0 Tbps to protect your business from even the largest DDoS attacks. It can run continuously to monitor all traffic and stop attacks from ever reaching your network, or it can be initiated on demand when your site is under DDoS attack.