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Key Metrics from the 2H 2020 NETSCOUT Threat Intelligence Report

As the COVID-19 pandemic triggered a massive shift in internet usage, cybercriminals quickly pounced, launching more than 10 million DDoS attacks aimed at crippling the very online services essential to remote work and online life. Vital pandemic industries such as ecommerce, streaming services, online learning, and healthcare all experienced increased attention from malicious actors, including those behind the Lazarus Bear Armada campaign of DDoS extortion attacks that hit thousands of companies worldwide. As the COVID-19 pandemic extends into 2021, we can logically expect to see threat actors targeting vulnerabilities exposed by the global crisis as well as discovering and using new attack vectors that poke at the weak spots of our new normal.

Impact Analysis

This was a record-breaking year for DDoS attacks—and that has to have an impact on global infrastructure, since DDoS attackers don’t pay for transit costs. Instead, that cost is generally passed down to everyone who uses the internet. So we continued to dig into the details of how much traffic on the global internet is due solely to DDoS attacks by calculating the DDoS Attack Coefficient (DAC). This measurement illustrates the continual presence of DDoS traffic across all regions. In essence, it shows the “DDoS tax” that we all end up paying.

Bandwidth Impact Percentage Change

July 269.4 Gbps, August 230.7 Gbps, September 275.0 Gbps, October 540.2 Gbps, November 304.1 Gbps, December 347.2 Gbps

Throughput Impact Percentage Change

July 71.7 Mpps, August 65.3 Mpps, September 59.6 Mpps, October 103.5 Mpps, November 93.2 Mpps, December 174.1 Mpps

Top Ten Vertical Industries Under Attack

The following industry chart shows the most targeted sectors in 2020 by number of attacks.

Rank Vertical Frequency Max Attack Max Impact Average Duration
Wired Telecommunications Resellers icon Wired Telecommunications Carriers
6,667 380.2 Gbps 46.4 Mpps 54.3 Minutes
cell phone icon Wireless Telecommunications Carriers
2,496 181.3 Gbps 22.5 Mpps 39.7 Minutes
cloud icon with up arrow Data Processing, Hosting + Related Services
1,609 254.9 Gbps 33.6 Mpps 42.7 Minutes
laptop icon Electronic Computer Manufacturing
903 380.2 Gbps 46.4 Mpps 47.9 Minutes
shopping cart icon Electronic Shopping + Mail-Order Houses
691 380.2 Gbps 46.4 Mpps 42.8 Minutes
Document with PDF icon Software Publishers
165 0.9 Gbps 0.1 Mpps 59.2 Minutes
radio icon Internet Publishing, Broadcasting + Web Search Portals
161 0.9 Gbps 0.1 Mpps 33.1 Minutes
Telecomm Tower icon Other Telecommunications
124 380.2 Gbps 46.4 Mpps 49.0 Minutes
riding lawn mower icon Landscaping Services
112 1.8 Gbps 0.2 Mpps 50.5 Minutes
Bullhorn icon Other Services Related to Advertising
106 5.7 Gbps 0.7 Mpps 40.2 Minutes


Top Five Username + Password Combinations

root/xc3511 - 442; guest/12345 - 416; admin/admin - 410; root/vizxv - 365; root/root - 227

Top Exploits

Exploit Name EDB-ID
/ctrlt/DeviceUpgrade_1 Huawei Router 45991
/picsdesc.xml Realtex SDK — Miniigd UPnP SOAP 37169
/setup.cgi Netgear Remote Code Execution 43055
/ws/v1/cluster/apps Hadoop YARN ResourceManager 45025
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