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DDoS Attacks Spike in First Half of 2022 to Highest Levels in Four Years

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The number of DDoS (distributed denial of service) attacks ballooned by 75% in the first half of 2022 as compared to the prior period in 2021, according to new research in Nexusguard's DDoS Statistical Report.

Application Attacks Rise 330%

The increase in attack numbers reflects the highest first half levels in four years, the company said. While the total number of attacks rose, the average (0.59 Gbps) and maximum (232.0 Gbps) attack sizes each decreased by 56% and 67%, respectively, during the same period, Nexusguard said.

Application attacks increased a whopping 330% compared to the second half of 2021, and amplification attacks increased by 107%.

Single-Victor Attacks Dominate

Here are some additional details from the report:

  • Single-vector attacks represented 85% of all attacks globally in H1 2022. UDP (User Datagram Protocol) attacks, which quickly overwhelm the target defenses, and HTTPS Flood, which exhaust servers with valid HTTPS requests, were the two most predominant vectors.
  • Nearly 40% of attacks were UDP, an increase of 78% from H2 2021, which combined with HTTP Flood accounted for more than half (56%) of DDoS attacks globally. UDP attacks frequently serve as a smokescreen to mask other malicious activities such as efforts to compromise personal identifiable information (PII) or the execution of malware or remote codes.
  • Reflection attacks spoof the IP address of the target, tricking it to believe it has received an authentic request, typically via UDP, to which the target responds. Nearly 75% of all reflected attacks targeted organizations in Brazil and South Korea. Within Europe, the United Kingdom received almost 25% of all reflected attacks in that region.

Commenting on the findings Juniman Kasman, chief technology officer of Nexusguard, said:

“Attackers came out of winter hibernation with never-before-seen levels of intent, showing an incredible increase of attacks in Q2 2022 alone and by June, reaching the highest first-half levels since 2018."

D. Howard Kass

D. Howard Kass is a contributing editor to MSSP Alert. He brings a career in journalism and market research to the role. He has served as CRN News Editor, Dataquest Channel Analyst, and West Coast Senior Contributing Editor at Channelnomics. As the CEO of The Viewpoint Group, he led groundbreaking market research.