A "surge" in distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks designed to cripple customer networks has been blamed on the growing availability of cheap and even free DDoS tools.
According to DDoS mitigation vendor Corero Network Security, DDoS attack attempts surged in the second quarter, with its customers experiencing an average of 4.5 attacks per day in Q2, up 32 per cent on Q1.
Cybercriminals are also launching more short-duration, sub-saturating attacks because they are more difficult to defeat, Corero's research found.
Corero said the rise in attacks was "generally not surprising at all".
"DDoS attack tools are cheap (in many cases free) to obtain, easy to launch and are most often executed with complete anonymity and can be driven by a wide range of motivations," the report stated.
Attackers are using DDoS attacks to either disrupt business operations or access sensitive corporate information, Corero said.
According to the report, the vast majority of attacks on Corero customers were less than 1Gbps in the first half, with more than 95 per cent of attacks lasting for 30 minutes or less.
"As attackers look for new ways to leverage DDoS attacks, they have realised that short-duration sub-saturating attacks are more difficult to defeat, particularly in carrier or service provider network environments that leverage coarse sampling detection techniques and centralised scrubbing centre," Corero said.
According to market watcher Infonetics Research, sales of DDoS prevention appliances hit $110m (£72.5m) in Q3 2014.
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