Saturday, 16th November 2019

Average DNS attack cost tops the $1 million mark

New EfficientIP report, in partnership with IDC, shows 34% increase in attacks.

EfficientIP, a leading specialist in DNS security for service continuity, user protection and data confidentiality, has published the results of its 2019 Global DNS Threat Report, sponsored research conducted by market intelligence firm IDC.

Over the past year, organizations faced on average more than nine DNS attacks, an increase of 34%. Costs too went up 49%, meaning one in five businesses lost over $1 million per attack and causing app downtime for 63% of those attacked. Other issues highlighted by the study, now in its fifth year, include the broad range and changing popularity of attack types, ranging from volumetric to low signal, including phishing, 47%, malware-based attacks, 39%, and old-school DDoS, 30%.

Also highlighted were the greater consequences of not securing the DNS network layer against all possible attacks. No sector was spared, leaving organizations open to a range of advanced effects from compromised brand reputation to losing business.

Romain Fouchereau, Research Manager European Security at IDC, says “With an average cost of $1m per attack, and a constant rise in frequency, organisations just cannot afford to ignore DNS security and need to implement it as an integral part of the strategic functional area of their security posture to protect their data and services.”

DNS is a central network foundation which enables users to reach all the apps they use for their daily work. Most network traffic first goes through a DNS resolution process, whether this is legitimate or malicious network activity. Any impact on DNS performance has major business implications. Well-publicized cyber attacks such as WannaCry and NotPetya caused financial and reputational damage to organizations across the world. The impact caused by DNS-based attacks is as important due to its mission-critical role.

The top impacts of DNS attacks - damaged reputation, business continuity and finances

Three-in-five, 63%, of organizations suffered application downtime, 45% had their websites compromised, and one-quarter, 27%, experienced business downtime as a direct consequence. These could all potentially lead to serious NISD (Network and Information Security Directive) penalties. In addition, one-quarter, 26%, of businesses had lost brand equity due to DNS attacks.

Data theft via DNS continues to be a problem. To protect against this, organizations are prioritizing securing network endpoints, 32%, and looking for better DNS traffic monitoring, 29%.

David Williamson, CEO of EfficientIP summarized the research “While these figures are the worst we have seen in five years of research, the good news is that the importance of DNS is at last being widely recognized by businesses. Mainstream organizations are now starting to leverage DNS as a key part of their security strategy to help with threat intelligence, policy control and automation, thus building a good foundation for their zero trust plan."

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