Denial of Service Attacks (Dos)

Denial of Service attack (DoS) operates by making a system partially or completely

unavailable such that it cannot access information (completely or effectively). DoS attacks may be

deliberate or accidental. Deliberate DoS attacks are aimed at denying legitimate users of a system

full or effective use of the system by overloading or destroying system resources such that

legitimate users cannot use them (Cole 178).

Types of DoS attacks

There are two types of DoS attacks. The first one is crashing a network or networked

system so that system or network resources are unavailable making the system unusable. The

second type involves overloading the system or network by feeding the system or network with so

much information that it cannot process and respond, which legitimate users are denied access to

the system or network since resources are already exhausted (Cole 179).

Why DoS attacks are common and successful

The success of denial of service attacks is contributed by two main factors, which comprise

the mode of operation of these attacks: they are easy to launch and difficult to distinguish (Huang

and Gouda 25). The ease of launching DoS attacks results from the fact that launching DoS attack

messages requires few resources including a single computer and some common tools that

attackers can download from the internet. The difficulty in distinguishing DoS attack messages

from normal messages that legitimate users generate make it difficult to defend a computer or a

networked system from DoS attacks. When combined, these two factors make DoS attacks very

common since no system can be said to be totally eliminated from the threat.

Protecting a website against DoS attacks

It is impossible to completely safeguard a website from DoS attacks, but some measures

can be taken to reduce the chances and magnitude of the threat. Maintain sufficient bandwidth to

reduce the impact of DoS attacks such that the...