How to deal with the growing menace of DDoS attacks in the Middle East

DDoS attacks are now a standard part of the threat landscape in the Middle East and technology leaders need to recognize this reality. Here are suggestions on how protect your organisation from DDoS attacks.

DDOS attack
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Any CISO or security professional who has put in a few years in the profession knows the sinking feeling that comes when they receive an alert or a notification informing them that their systems and network are being targeted by a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack. This feeling unfortunately is becoming more and more common as DDoS attacks have become a major problem in the Middle East, with attackers realizing the exponential damage they can do in the era of remote working and the expanded attack surface that it provides.

To put things into perspective, Help AG, the cybersecurity arm of Etisalat Digital, reported in their State of the Market Report 2021 that there were more than 10 million DDoS attacks globally last year, with the UAE seeing a 183% spike to 110,000 attacks — a staggering increase.

In addition, a recent survey by A10 networks to understand the concerns of communication service providers in the new post-COVID world yielded some interesting results, especially from the Middle East. More than half of the service providers in the Middle East have fast-tracked their security investments, with DDoS mitigation the highest priority, according to the report.

What is DDoS?

DDoS attacks, for the uninitiated, are the cyber-crime equivalent of a hostage situation as criminals will provide a list of demands to be met at the threat of bringing down your network with a massive amount of traffic, rendering it useless. The demands can be monetary or even political in nature, but the threat remains the same.

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