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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 10.7 Mpps, August 6.6 Mpps, September 5.3 Mpps, October 10.7 Mpps, November 9.7 Mpps, December 10.8 Mpps

Throughput Impact Percentage Change

July 40.0 Gbps, August 55.1 Gbps, September 25.2 Gbps, October 39.8 Gbps, November 93.5 Gbps, December 40.5 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
Wired Telecommunications Resellers icon Wired Telecommunications Carriers
5,216 66.5 Gbps 14.1 Mpps 35.6 Minutes
laptop icon Electronic Computer Manufacturing
1,364 42.2 Gbps 4.4 Mpps 19.9 Minutes
cloud icon with up arrow Data Processing, Hosting + Related Services
205 30.6 Gbps 7.8 Mpps 37.3 Minutes
support person icon Support Services
192 1.3 Gbps 0.3 Mpps 73.0 Minutes
shopping cart icon Electronic Shopping + Mail-Order Houses
66 3.3 Gbps 0.8 Mpps 33.5 Minutes
desktop computer icon Computer Terminal + Other Computer Peripheral Equipment Manufacturing
20 0.1 Gbps 0.01 Mpps 17.1 Minutes
educational building icon Colleges, Universities + Professional Schools
9 0.3 Gbps 0.2 Mpps 35.1 Minutes
Telecomm Tower icon Other Telecommunications
6 0.2 Gbps 0.01 Mpps 58.1 Minutes
hotel icon Hotels + Motels
5 0.9 Gbps 0.09 Mpps 40.4 Minutes
Sales Tag with Telephone icon Telecommunications Resellers
5 0.1 Gbps 0.03 Mpps 89.3 Minutes


Top Five Username + Password Combinations

admin/admin - 165; root/xc3511 - 156; root/vizxv - 143; guest/12345 - 123; root/root - 110

Top Exploits

Exploit Name EDB-ID
/ctrlt/DeviceUpgrade_1 Huawei Router 45991
/ws/v1/cluster/apps Hadoop YARN ResourceManager 45025
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