What is a DDoS attack?
DDoS stands for ‘Distributed Denial-of-Service’. It is an attack that involves a large volume of traffic being sent to a web application such as a website in an effort to overwhelm it and take it offline. Hackers perform DDoS attacks by taking control of a number of internet-connected devices to create a network of centrally-controlled computers known as a botnet. They then use that botnet to direct large volumes of traffic at a single target.
How will my website be affected by a DDoS attack?
When large volumes of traffic are sent to a specific application the effects can be detrimental, if not disastrous. The effects can be felt for hours, days, and weeks after the attack has taken place.
The immediate effect is loss of service and revenue, with longer-term effects on your business reputation, SEO, and site performance.
Whilst we cannot stop them completely, we can put processes in place to better protect against botnets.
DDoS attacks affect downtime
Your application is overwhelmed by the amount of traffic and goes down, becoming unusable.
The longer your application is down, the more potential student applications, open day bookings, and event bookings you will lose and the more long-term damage will be caused if your visitors decide to go elsewhere to meet their requirements.
DDoS attacks affect site speed
After an attack, your website will become slow. Students are likely to expect your application to load quickly and may not have the patience to wait for page elements to load.
Don't risk page load times in important areas of your website:
- Online application forms
- Online courses
- Important updates
- Study guides
- Student and staff portals
- Online libraries and catalogues
DDoS attacks will affect your SEO
If your website is down long enough for search engines such as Google to notice, then there can be long-term effects on your organic search results positions.
If organic search traffic is a major contributor to your overall website traffic this can result in a loss of any income usually generated by the website. The recovery process can be time-consuming, lengthy, and costly.