You’re staring down the barrels of a full-bore denial of service attack. Your site is offline. Your e-commerce application is generating no money. Your boss is freaking out. What do you do?
Your own ability to counter denial of service attack is going to be limited by the raw network capacity and server horsepower at your disposal. If you’ve got ten-gigabit uplinks and racks full of clustered, redundant hardware then you might be able to weather the storm on your own. In most cases though, you’re going to need some outside help to get the job done.
The first stop should be your datacenter or hosting provider. An attack that might be overwhelming at the level of your server or small collection of servers might not be when you go up one level to your actual infrastructure provider. We counter denial of service attack for our customers on a smaller scale all the time. Often a quick phone call can get you the help you need in the form of some smart filtering and/or temporary increase in capacity. If the bad guys have smaller guns than your hosting/datacenter provider, then the attack generally ends when they see that they’re having no impact.
If your datacenter or hosting provider can’t (or won’t) help, its time to engage the services of a company that specializes in countering denial of service attack. A DoS mitigation vendor essentially uses a very large capacity network and advanced filtering and traffic management techniques to absorb malicious traffic on your behalf. The bad stuff is scrubbed, and the legitimate traffic is forwarded to you. Done correctly, this puts you back in business in relatively short order. There’s a price to pay for the service, but sometimes its your only real option when an attack is of large enough scale and long enough duration.
If you’re in need of some direction or assistance with regard to dealing with denial of service attack, let us know. We’re happy to help in any way we can.