Despite being a method which has been used for more than a decade, Distributed Reflection Denial of Service (DrDoS) attacks have recently surged in popularity across a number of verticals.
Prolexic, which provides DDoS protection services, recently launched the first of several white papers that discusses and analyzes Domain Name System (DNS) Reflection attacks, specifically.
According to Prolexic, the DNS Reflection DrDoS technique exploits security weaknesses in the DNS Internet protocol, an important Internet feature that allows the public to type in human-friendly domain names instead of numerical IP addresses to access websites.
“DNS Reflection DrDoS attacks are an overlooked but dangerous DDoS attack method,” said Stuart Scholly, Prolexic President. “Prolexic is releasing this white paper to help make DNS server administrators, IT administrators and business leaders aware of this potential security threat against their networks. In addition, the white paper can help victims understand the technical details of what took place, so they can more quickly mitigate these kinds of DDoS attacks in the future.”
Prolexic explains this type of threat as when a cyberattacker leverages zombie computers in a botnet to send domain name requests to DNS servers in a way that causes DNS servers to send a flood of responses to a targeted domain. This kind of DrDoS attack can overwhelm and slow response times, or completely stop legitimate user access, and affects both the DNS servers and the targeted domain.
Additionally, a DNS Reflection attack is relatively easy for cybercriminals to launch, and takes advantage of security loopholes in the DNS protocol, the Prolexic Security Engineering and Response Team (PLXsert) warns. What’s more, it is difficult to pinpoint the source of a reflected DDoS attack, offering anonymity to the attacker.
The DNS Reflection Attack white paper explains DNS and how an attacker exploits the protocol to cause an outage. The white paper is available free of charge at www.prolexic.com/drdos.