For the first time in nearly a year, Akamai researchers saw a drop in the number of DDoS attacks targeting customers. The details are outlined in the newly-released State of the Internet Report for the third quarter of 2013.
For the first time since the fourth quarter of 2012, when Akamai began reporting on DDoS attacks, fewer attacks were reported than the previous quarter, with 281 observed in the third quarter of 2013 compared to 318 during the second quarter (down 11 percent).
That said, Akamai still saw more attacks through the third quarter of 2013 (807) than it did in all of 2012 (768).
Among the findings:
- The Enterprise sector continued to be the leading target of DDoS attacks with 127 reported in the third quarter; Commerce was next with 80, followed by Media & Entertainment (42), Public Sector (18) and High Tech (14).
- Akamai has also started to examine the likelihood that attack targets may be subject to follow-up attacks. Out of the 281 third-quarter attacks, 169 were focused on unique targets. During the quarter, 27 customers were attacked for a second time; five reported three attacks; and seven companies were attacked more than three times. Initial analysis of the data indicates that if a company is the target of a DDoS attack, there is a 25 percent chance that it could be attacked again within three months.
"Although the number of DDoS attacks reported by Akamai customers in the third quarter declined from the previous quarter, we believe that 2013 will ultimately be a significantly more active year for DDoS attacks than 2012," said David Belson, the report's editor. "As of the end of the third quarter, customers had already reported more DDoS attacks than they did in all of 2012."
The following chart shows DDoS attacks Akamai customers reported by quarter: