We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
78,785 News Articles

DDoS attacks die off, but spam returns

Denial of service extortion doesn't work

Tech crime has a new victim – the tech criminal. It appears that one form of attack that struck fear into the hearts of security experts the world over is actually a dud.

Symantec has noted a sharp decline in distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, where a network of remote-controlled bots - usually end-user machines infected with malicious software - overloads a target's system and takes it offline.

Tech criminals have instead turned back to old-fashioned spam to make everyone's lives a misery.

The decline in DDoS attacks is due to the fact that such attacks simply aren't paying off for the attackers, Symantec security engineer Yazan Gable said in a note on the company's website.

"Although there are likely a number of factors at play here, I think there is one primary factor: denial of service extortion attacks are no longer profitable," Gable wrote.

DDoS attacks first started to skyrocket in the second half of 2005, according to Symantec's twice-yearly Threat Report, rising 51 percent to an average of 1,402 attacks per day.

In the first half of 2006 the upward trend continued, reaching an average of 6,110 attacks per day.

But by the second half of 2006 DDoS attacks appeared to have reached a peak, declining to an average of 5,213 per day.


IDG UK Sites

Android One vs Android Silver vs Google Nexus: What is the difference?

IDG UK Sites

2014 Mac mini release date, specs, rumours: When's the new Mac mini coming out?

IDG UK Sites

Long live the internet fridge: the Internet of Things is coming

IDG UK Sites

How Prometheus' colourist Juan Ignacio Cabrera gave a tense, edgy feel to Chosen