Zayo: DDoS attacks jump 200% in the first half of 2023

Aug. 24, 2023
DDoS attack activity increased nearly four-fold from the first to the second quarter of 2023, spurred by increased automation.

Zayo revealed in its annual Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) Insights Report that the advent of DDoS attacks have risen 200% during the first half of 2023 compared to the full year of 2022. The service provider said that several factors led to the rise in DDoS attacks, including the global landscape of increasing digitization, political unrest, and the emergence of widespread adoption of work-from-home.

During the first half of 2022 to the first half of 2023, Zayo found a 314% increase in overall attacks. However, the provider said the growth was over 1,300% in some industry segments. Perhaps even more troubling was how attackers leveraged AI and automation to drive a 387% increase in attack activity from the first to the second quarter of this year alone.

Four main industries are facing growing attacks:

·      Telecom providers: The industry saw the most frequent attacks, accounting for roughly half of the total attack volume, with more than 37,000 attacks in the first half of 2023.

·       Education: This segment, which had the highest frequency of attacks in the first half of 2022, was just behind the telecommunications industry. Cloud and Software as a Service (SaaS) companies also saw a significant increase in the frequency of attacks from the first half of 2022 to the first half of 2023.

·       Retail, telecommunications, and media: These segments experienced the largest attacks, with an average attack size of 3 Gbps across all three verticals, which is a large enough attack to take down one to two offices depending on the company size. The largest aggregate attack, against the telecom sector, was 978Gbps. Comparatively, in 2022, telecommunications and government experienced the largest attacks.

·       Government: The government sector experienced the longest attacks of any sector, a change from healthcare in 2022.

Across all industries, the average duration of attacks increased by 216% from Q1 to Q2, with the finance industry seeing the largest leap from 41 minutes to 108 minutes.

The financial damage caused by these issues is steep. According to HubSpot, Zayo found that unprotected organizations experienced an average cost of $200,000 per DDoS attack. Even small businesses are hit hard, with average costs of $120,000 to recover.

“When your business will get hit by a DDoS attack is a game of probability,” said Anna Claiborne, SVP of Packet and Product Software Engineering at Zayo. “With a huge rise in attacks in 2023 and more attacks over 100Gbps, the odds are not in your favor. While there are a myriad of statistics on the cost of remediating a DDoS attack, the long-tail loss of customer confidence after an attack is difficult to quantify and even more difficult to fix. Running any business on the Internet without DDoS protection is a risk, and you have to ask yourself if it's one worth taking.”

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About the Author

Sean Buckley

Sean is responsible for establishing and executing the editorial strategies of Lightwave and Broadband Technology Report across their websites, email newsletters, events, and other information products.

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