DDoS Attacks Explained – and How to Prevent Them

Cloud Virtual Private Servers (Cloud VPS)
Cloud Virtual Private Servers (Cloud VPS)

Written By: Oplink.net | Last Updated: November 2022

DDoS attacks affect millions of websites every year costing businesses millions of pounds worth of damages. Attacks are continuing to rise every year worldwide, so you should know how to prepare your website if one occurs. 

If websites are successful, it’s likely they may receive an attack at some point. In this post, we’ll explain what a DDoS attack is, how it works and how to prevent your website from DDoS attacks. 

What is a DDoS Attack?

DDoS or ‘distributed denial of service’ attack is whereby a website receives a large number of requests in a short period of time, causing it to crash. 

These requests come from multiple locations all at the same time. Requests can be received over minutes or even hours. 

How Does a DDoS Attack Work?

DDoS attacks aren’t the same as your website being hacked. Instead, people behind the DDos attack are merely trying to cause a website to crash, not access admin or files.

However, sometimes a DDoS attack can lead to hacking if it’s vulnerable. There are limited ways to stop someone from making your site crash, but there are ways to prevent them and ensure it doesn’t become vulnerable. 

How Long Does a DDoS Attack Last?

In some instances a DDoS attack can last up to four hours. However, they usually last around one hour. 

Although they are common, most of them are small, which means they can be prevented using our tips below. 

The Effects of a DDoS Attack

There can be a variety of effects if a DDoS occurs, depending on how prepared you are for it. 

Website Downtime

As your website is crashing due to a DDoS attack, you won’t be able to access any business information until it’s over. This can affect your brand’s reputation and customers may choose to look elsewhere for their required service.

If your website is overloaded, this may impact your search rankings if it is untreated. This will mean a lack of search volume which may also negatively impact your reputation. 

Hosting Issues

If your website is receiving these attacks regularly, it could lead to hosting issues with your provider. 

Your hosting provider will give you tools to protect your site against attacks, but if you’re on shared hosting, it could impact your other sites on the same server.

Website Vulnerability

If your website is attacked, it could make you more vulnerable to hackers and they may find an easier way into the back end of your website. 

Ensure your website is secure to avoid potential hackers accessing your site. This could be more important than getting your website back online. If not, you could face more attacks. 

Lost Time and Money

A DDoS attack can take a lot of time out of your schedule, especially if you need to repair it. 

If you don’t know what happened, you could spend time having to rebuild it. If you have a backup of your website, you may be able to fix it quickly. 

However, if you don’t have a backup, you could risk facing a decline in revenue and business performance. 

What Can Make Your Website Vulnerable to DDoS Attacks?

DDos attacks can be caused because some websites are vulnerable. Let’s see why your website could be vulnerable in the first place. 

Cheap Hosting

Cheap website hosting can be the first culprit when it comes to DDoS attacks. It can offer a lack of support which is needed to protect your website. 

As cheap hosting providers have a large volume of clients on the same server, they can lack certain security precautions to help against DDoS attacks. 

Lack of Preparation

If your security measures are prepared for a DDoS attack, you could limit the damage it causes. 

If you’re prepared, you may be able to keep your website online if you’re receiving an attack. Preparation is key, especially if your business or brand has a large reputation. 

Insecure Code

To ensure you’re prepared for a DDoS attack, make sure your website is up to date. This will make it less likely for hackers to access your site if it’s well-managed. 

For security reasons, make sure you’re implementing code that is compatible with your hosting website. 

How to Stop a DDoS Attack

There are a variety of ways to stop a DDoS attack, which can depend on your hosting, budget and preferences. 

A Corero Smartwall can provide DDoS protection for your website. It can deliver the best layer 3 to layer 7 DDoS mitigation in a matter of seconds. It can provide an incredibly fast and accurate system to keep your servers online and protected.

With a Corero Smartwall, Oplink.net protects against large network-based DDoS attacks including:

  • Floods
  • Reflective amplified spoof attacks
  • Attacks that may be too small to be detected 

With the management of our own routers, switches and servers, we can apply customized and latest filtering technology. 

Find Out How to Prevent a DDoS Attack

DDoS attacks can be very harmful to your website and cost your business millions of dollars worth of damage. 

Although they can be prevented, you must be prepared for them as this will allow you to keep your website safe and keep it running whilst they’re happening. 

Avoid cheap hosting, and ensure you have the right DDoS protection to help you if your website is attacked. 

Get in touch and see how Oplink.net can help you with DDoS attacks.

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