Distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks have hit 41 per cent of organisations in the past year, with more than three-quarters of those targeted twice or more within the same time period, a new global research study from BT has revealed.
The research was undertaken by Vanson Bourne in May 2014, and saw 640 IT decision makers in medium to large organisations (1,000+ employees) across 11 countries and regions interviewed.
The study found that DDoS attacks were seen as key concern by 58 per cent of organisations globally – although this is significantly lower in the UK, with just 36 per cent of firms citing DDoS as a key concern.
Despite the concerns, only half (49 per cent) of UK organisations have a response plan in place, and only eight per cent of UK decision makers strongly believe they have sufficient resources in place to counteract an attack.
More worryingly is that nearly two-third of all organisations that were part of the study agreed that DDoS attacks were becoming more effective at subverting their IT security measures; ‘hybrid’ or ‘mutli-vector’ attacks have increased by 41 per cent during the past year.
According to the study, on average, organisations take 12 hours to fully recover from the worst attacks. In the UK, 58 per cent of IT decision makers admit that DDoS attacks have brought down their systems for more than six hours.
Mark Hughes, president of BT Security, said that as DDoS attacks had evolved significantly in the past few years, firms needed a higher level of security solution to protect the network infrastructure, and the devices that initially provide protection.
“DDoS attacks can have a damaging effect on revenues and send an organisation into full crisis mode. Reputations, revenue and customer confidence are on the line following a DDoS attack, not to mention the upfront time and cost that it takes an organisation to recover following an attack. Finance, e-commerce companies and retailers in particular suffer when their websites or businesses are targeted,” he said.
BT’s study follows a survey by analytics provider Neustar, which found that a third of UK companies estimate losses of more than £240,000 per day as a result of DDoS attacks.