Surge in DDoS Attacks on Financial Services Firms

According to Prolexic’s Quarterly Global DDoS Attack Report for Q1 2012, the volume of distributed denial of service attacks against financial services firms tripled in the first quarter of 2012.

“Prolexic, which specializes in DDoS protection services, said it ‘mitigated more attack traffic’ in the first three months of this year than it had in all of 2011,” writes’s Damon Poeter. “In addition to the massive spike in attacks aimed at financial services clients from the final quarter of last year, Prolexic said it had seen a 3,000 percent sequential increase in malicious packet traffic.”

“Despite the overall increase in attacks as compared to Q1 2011, Prolexic indicated that the split between attack types remained virtually identical,” writes Bank Systems & Technology’s Bryan Yurcan. “Seventy-three percent were infrastructure attacks (layer 3 and 4) while 27 percent were aimed at the application layer (Layer 7).”

“Compared to Q4 2011, Prolexic said the average length of a DDoS attack has declined to 28.5 hours from 34 hours,” writes Silicon Republic’s Carmel Doyle. “China remains the top source country for attacks but the US and Russia have both moved up in the rankings.”

“The report, based on forensics and post-attack analysis by Prolexic’s Security Engineering and Response Team, also found that attackers are shifting to new platforms as well, increasingly creating botnets that exploit browsers, Mac OS X, and mobile phone platforms to generate their traffic,” writes Ars Technica’s Sean Gallagher.

Jeff Goldman
Jeff Goldman has been a technology journalist for more than 20 years and an eSecurity Planet contributor since 2009.

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