For more than a month, the online game Final Fantasy 14 has been experiencing connectivity issues due to Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) attacks on its North American data centre. The game developer, Square Enix, recently reported that attacks have shown no signs of stopping and are becoming increasingly difficult to contain. These attacks highlight just how exposed the gaming industry is to DDoS attacks, and reminds us how damaging successful attacks can be.
Online Gaming DDoS Attack Motives
Hacking groups such as Lizard Squad regularly deploy DDoS attacks against online games in order to establish their DDoS capabilities publicly and demonstrate their potential. While at the same time, gamers regularly use DDoS attacks as a competitive tool, in order to gain a tactical advantage within a game and to disrupt other players’ sessions. As DDoS tools become increasingly widespread and accessible, this problem isn’t going anyway anytime soon. So, it’s time for games developers to regain control against DDoS attacks by taking a proactive defense.
Online gaming companies can be subjected to multiple attacks. Sometimes there are dozens of attacks per day that range in size and scale. Regardless of the motivation, or techniques used to execute the attacks, these cyber events lead to downtime, latency and availability issues. If an attack is severe enough to effectively render the game unplayable for extended periods, the business impact can be significant. Any service downtime equates to a drop-in visitors and a corresponding loss of revenue. Beyond immediate revenue loss, disgruntled and impatient customers will turn to other online video gaming sites if the game they are trying to access is unresponsive or unavailable. As a result, gaming providers must enable proactive DDoS defense measures to eliminate the damage associated with a successful attack.
DDoS Defense for Online Gaming Providers
These solutions incorporate high-performance DDoS technology and can be positioned at the network edge, monitoring and mitigating DDoS attack traffic automatically and in real-time. These solutions do not rely on traffic redirection, sending the attack traffic deeper into the network to a scrubbing center environment, they do not rely on human intervention, and they do not rely on legacy tools or techniques that some network and security departments use to eliminate DDoS attacks. Innovation in DDoS defense technologies have completely changed the time-to-mitigation window, allowing for automated protection – without impacting good user traffic. To find out more about how real-time DDoS protection can help the gaming industry, take a look through our work with Jagex in this case study.
Contact us for more information on how to defend against DDoS attacks.