Attacks/Breaches
2/2/2011
12:20 PM
Connect Directly
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

DDoS Targeting Firewalls, Intrusion Prevention

Stateful firewalls and intrusion prevention systems placed in front of a Web server can create an effective distributed denial of service attack vector, reports network security vendor Arbor Networks.

Top 10 Security Stories Of 2010
(click image for larger view)
Slideshow: Top 10 Security Stories Of 2010

Distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks have broken the 100 Gbps barrier, increasing in bandwidth by 102% over the past year, and by 1000% since 2005.

That finding comes from an infrastructure security report, released on Tuesday by DDoS protection and network security vendor Arbor Networks. The company surveyed 111 self-classified Tier 1, Tier 2, and other IP network operators from around the world, and found the volume and severity of attacks continues to increase.

"Network operators are facing a global Internet insurgency driven by the ubiquity of botnets. This has led to rapidly escalating DDoS attack size, frequency, and sophistication," said Roland Dobbins, a solutions architect at Arbor Networks, in a statement. "Adding to the challenges facing operators is the increasing number of attack vectors, including applications and services, not to mention the proliferation of mobile devices."

Historically, DDoS attacks involved flooding Web servers with so many fake packets that they choked. But Arbor says that attackers are increasingly targeting specific network weaknesses, such as misconfigured domain name servers (DNS), which require relatively fewer resources to knock offline. Last year, according to the report, 77% of network operators detected DDoS attacks targeted at their application layer, including DNS and Web portals.

Surprisingly, placing a stateful firewall (which attempts to track the state of network connections when filtering packets) or intrusion prevention system (IPS) in front of a Web server can create another effective DDoS attack vector. "These devices can render networks more susceptible to attacks as the state tables on even the most scalable versions available can be overwhelmed with a moderate size DDoS attack," said Arbor. Indeed, half of the Internet data center operators surveyed said they'd experienced a firewall or IPS outage as the result of a DDoS attack.

As the sophistication and scale of DDoS attacks continues to increase, the report finds network operators struggling to keep up. In particular, they face insufficient security team funding, a shortage of skilled talent, poorly defined employee responsibilities, and incomplete security policies.

Interestingly, when network operators do experience a security breach, they're unlikely to report it to law enforcement. "This is due to both a lack of network operator resources and a lack of confidence in the ability of law enforcement to successfully investigate these incidents, especially in a multijurisdictional context," said Arbor.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Flash Poll
Current Issue
Cartoon
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2013-6335
Published: 2014-08-26
The Backup-Archive client in IBM Tivoli Storage Manager (TSM) for Space Management 5.x and 6.x before 6.2.5.3, 6.3.x before 6.3.2, 6.4.x before 6.4.2, and 7.1.x before 7.1.0.3 on Linux and AIX, and 5.x and 6.x before 6.1.5.6 on Solaris and HP-UX, does not preserve file permissions across backup and ...

CVE-2014-0480
Published: 2014-08-26
The core.urlresolvers.reverse function in Django before 1.4.14, 1.5.x before 1.5.9, 1.6.x before 1.6.6, and 1.7 before release candidate 3 does not properly validate URLs, which allows remote attackers to conduct phishing attacks via a // (slash slash) in a URL, which triggers a scheme-relative URL ...

CVE-2014-0481
Published: 2014-08-26
The default configuration for the file upload handling system in Django before 1.4.14, 1.5.x before 1.5.9, 1.6.x before 1.6.6, and 1.7 before release candidate 3 uses a sequential file name generation process when a file with a conflicting name is uploaded, which allows remote attackers to cause a d...

CVE-2014-0482
Published: 2014-08-26
The contrib.auth.middleware.RemoteUserMiddleware middleware in Django before 1.4.14, 1.5.x before 1.5.9, 1.6.x before 1.6.6, and 1.7 before release candidate 3, when using the contrib.auth.backends.RemoteUserBackend backend, allows remote authenticated users to hijack web sessions via vectors relate...

CVE-2014-0483
Published: 2014-08-26
The administrative interface (contrib.admin) in Django before 1.4.14, 1.5.x before 1.5.9, 1.6.x before 1.6.6, and 1.7 before release candidate 3 does not check if a field represents a relationship between models, which allows remote authenticated users to obtain sensitive information via a to_field ...

Best of the Web
Dark Reading Radio
Archived Dark Reading Radio
This episode of Dark Reading Radio looks at infosec security from the big enterprise POV with interviews featuring Ron Plesco, Cyber Investigations, Intelligence & Analytics at KPMG; and Chris Inglis & Chris Bell of Securonix.