DDoS attacks appear to be growing larger and becoming more frequent, according to a new report from Akamai.
According to Akamai’s Third Quarter, 2016 State of the Internet / Security Report, the two largest DDoS attacks this quarter, both leveraging the Mirai botnet, were the biggest the company has ever seen, recorded at 623 Gbps and 555 Gbps.
Compared to Q3 2015, total DDoS attacks increased 71% in Q3 2016, according to Akamai.
The report illustrates how malicious actors are growing increasingly savvy and capable of launching bigger, more sophisticated attacks — yet another reason for businesses to continue investing in cybersecurity defense efforts and employee education.
"Every couple of years the industry faces what could be considered 'harbinger attacks', where the size and scope of a security event are radically different than what has come before. I believe the industry faced its latest 'harbinger' with the Mirai botnet," said Martin McKeay, senior security advocate and senior editor of the new report.
The use of IoT devices to launch DDoS attacks was a new factor this quarter, and sent IoT manufacturers scrambling to improve the security of their devices.
Akamai said there were 19 mammoth attacks mitigated in Q3 that peaked at over 100 Gbps.
Meanwhile, Web applications attacks fell, demonstrating malicious actors are once again changing their tactics. Q3 2016 showed an 18% decrease in total worldwide web application attacks from Q3 2015, according to the report, while Q3 2016 web application attacks sourced from the United States decreased by 67% from Q3 2015.