Demystifying DDoS attacks: Google Ideas and Arbor show off new visualisation tool

DDoS in pretty graphs

Google's Ideas 'think do' tank is to publish a daily visualisation of global DDoS attacks and trends based on data fed to it by mitigation firm Arbor Networks.

The information in Google Ideas' Digital Attack Map is already available on Arbor's website through its Atlas system which pulls raw data from a network of sensors located in important Internet peers, but the new visualisation makes it much easier to understand for non-experts.

A number of types of trend can be viewed from the visualisation, including global bandwidth consumed by DDoS traffic and the types of attacks prevalent on any given day. Attack patterns for individual countries are also presented in a design that will make it possible to trace longer-term trends over time.

The obvious question is why Google Ideas and Arbor felt the need to set up this kind of tool when the data is already available. The answer seems to be the rising significance of DDoS attacks as a type of threat with consequences in the real world.

Far from being an area of interest onlly to security researchers, these days DDoS attacks can be a mainstream event as coverage of the mega attack on Spamhaus earlier in 2013 underlined.

"The goal of this collaboration was to show what a global threat DDoS is and how DDoS can be used to suppress speech and threaten open access to information," said Arbor's president, Colin Doherty. "The people at Google Ideas have really done an amazing job bringing Arbor's global DDoS attack data to life."

It's also a clever way for Arbor Networks and Google to brand their portal as a reference point for anyone looking for hard data on real attacks. Although Atlas only sees a portion of global Internet traffic it sees more than enough to make possible an accurate visualisation of what is actually going on.

Last week the firm reported that during the first three quarters of 2013 very large DDoS atttacks had increased markedly.

Google Ideas already has a number of diverse visualisation projects on the go, including mapping defections from the regime of Syria's President Assad and plotting the long-term global import and export of small arms and their ammunition.

Join the CSO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Personal TechGoogleSpamhaussecurity

More about Arbor NetworksArbor NetworksGoogle

Show Comments

Featured Whitepapers

Editor's Recommendations

Solution Centres

Stories by John E Dunn

Latest Videos

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Will your data protection strategy be enough when disaster strikes?

    Speakers: - Paul O’Connor, Engagement leader - Performance Audit Group, Victorian Auditor-General’s Office (VAGO) - Nigel Phair, Managing Director, Centre for Internet Safety - Joshua Stenhouse, Technical Evangelist, Zerto - Anthony Caruana, CSO MC & Moderator

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: The Human Factor - Your people are your biggest security weakness

    ​Speakers: David Lacey, Researcher and former CISO Royal Mail David Turner - Global Risk Management Expert Mark Guntrip - Group Manager, Email Protection, Proofpoint

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Current ransomware defences are failing – but machine learning can drive a more proactive solution

    Speakers • Ty Miller, Director, Threat Intelligence • Mark Gregory, Leader, Network Engineering Research Group, RMIT • Jeff Lanza, Retired FBI Agent (USA) • Andy Solterbeck, VP Asia Pacific, Cylance • David Braue, CSO MC/Moderator What to expect: ​Hear from industry experts on the local and global ransomware threat landscape. Explore a new approach to dealing with ransomware using machine-learning techniques and by thinking about the problem in a fundamentally different way. Apply techniques for gathering insight into ransomware behaviour and find out what elements must go into a truly effective ransomware defence. Get a first-hand look at how ransomware actually works in practice, and how machine-learning techniques can pick up on its activities long before your employees do.

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Get real about metadata to avoid a false sense of security

    Speakers: • Anthony Caruana – CSO MC and moderator • Ian Farquhar, Worldwide Virtual Security Team Lead, Gigamon • John Lindsay, Former CTO, iiNet • Skeeve Stevens, Futurist, Future Sumo • David Vaile - Vice chair of APF, Co-Convenor of the Cyberspace Law And Policy Community, UNSW Law Faculty This webinar covers: - A 101 on metadata - what it is and how to use it - Insight into a typical attack, what happens and what we would find when looking into the metadata - How to collect metadata, use this to detect attacks and get greater insight into how you can use this to protect your organisation - Learn how much raw data and metadata to retain and how long for - Get a reality check on how you're using your metadata and if this is enough to secure your organisation

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them Featuring: • John Baird, Director of Global Technology Production, Deutsche Bank • Samantha Macleod, GM Cyber Security, ME Bank • Sherrod DeGrippo, Director of Emerging Threats, Proofpoint (USA)

    Play Video

More videos

Blog Posts

Market Place