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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 272.6 Mpps, August 185.2 Mpps, September 208.2 Mpps, October 136.9 Mpps, November 188.8 Mpps, December 85.4 Mpps

Throughput Impact Percentage Change

July 773.4 Gbps, August 833.7 Gbps, September 1156.2 Gbps, October 948.4 Gbps, November 737.7 Gbps, December 560.1 Gbps

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
cloud icon with up arrow Data Processing, Hosting + Related Services
32,911 103.4 Gbps 33.4 Mpps 51.4 Minutes
shopping cart icon Electronic Shopping + Mail-Order Houses
15,113 72.4 Gbps 15.3 Mpps 33.2 Minutes
Wired Telecommunications Resellers icon Wired Telecommunications Carriers
9,989 68.9 Gbps 18.7 Mpps 45.8 Minutes
cell phone icon Wireless Telecommunications Carriers
4,604 89.2 Gbps 15.3 Mpps 45.6 Minutes
Telecomm Tower icon Other Telecommunications
1,992 82.0 Gbps 15.3 Mpps 81.4 Minutes
laptop icon Electronic Computer Manufacturing
1,649 68.9 Gbps 15.3 Mpps 86.7 Minutes
tooth icon Offices of Dentists
1,579 26.9 Gbps 16.7 Mpps 30.9 Minutes
radio icon Internet Publishing, Broadcasting + Web Search Portals
1,141 6.4 Gbps 1.5 Mpps 38.2 Minutes
medical bag icon All Other Health + Personal Care Stores
599 1.1 Gbps 0.1 Mpps 28.2 Minutes
Sales Tag with Telephone icon Telecommunications Resellers
481 1.2 Gbps 0.4 Mpps 47.5 Minutes


Top Five Username + Password Combinations

root/xc3511 - 815; admin/admin - 785; root/vizxv - 666; root/root - 585; guest/12345 - 451

Top Exploits

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