Because of its extensive features and secure codebase, WordPress is one of the most popular website builders in the world. But, that does not protect WordPress or any other program from DDoS attacks.
One of the most common sorts of attacks is the DDoS Attack on WordPress Site. Attackers using DDoS flood your server, rendering it unresponsive and inaccessible.
These attacks might harm both small and large websites.
Also, DDoS attacks can go undetected for a long time while the site owners investigate the problem’s origins. The damage increases in the time it takes to figure out that it’s a DDoS attack.
As a result, you begin to lose visitors, and your SEO rankings begin to decline. The financial consequences of lost revenue and recovery costs could be fatal.
Your website and business must take steps to stop and prevent DDoS attacks. They must always be prepared in the case of an attack.
In this article, we’ll show you how to protect your website from DDoS attacks.
- 1 What is a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) Attack?
- 2 Why Do DDoS Attacks Occur?
- 3 What Happens During A DDoS Attack?
- 4 What kind of damage may a DDoS attack cause?
- 5 How Can You Protect Your WordPress Website From a DDoS Attack?
- 6 How Can a DDoS Attack on Your WordPress Site Be Avoided?
- 7 What should you do if your WordPress site is being attacked by a DDoS attack?
- 8 DoS and DDoS Attacks: What’s the Difference?
What is a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) Attack?
A DDoS attack is a sort of cyber attack. It sends or requests data from a WP server using compromised computers and devices. The goal of these queries is to cause the targeted server to slow down and eventually crash.
DoS (Denial of Service) attacks have developed into DDoS attacks. Unlike a DoS attack, they use a large number of infected devices or servers located around the world.
A botnet is a collection of infected machines that create a network. Each infected machine serves as a bot, launching attacks on the system or server in question.
This allows them to continue undetected for a time and do the most damage possible before being blocked.
DDoS attacks can affect even the largest internet enterprises.
In 2018, GitHub, a famous code hosting platform, was hit by a large DDoS attack. The attack flooded its servers with 1.3 terabytes of data per second.
You may recall the infamous 2016 attack on DYN (a DNS service provider). This attack was widely publicized since it affected some well-known websites. Including Amazon, Netflix, PayPal, Visa, Airbnb, The NYT, Reddit, and thousands of others.
Why Do DDoS Attacks Occur?
A variety of factors motivate DDoS attacks. Here are a few examples:
- People who are technically skilled but are bored and find it exciting.
- People and organizations attempting to make a political statement
- Groups that target a specific country’s or region’s websites and services
- Attacks with the intent of causing financial harm.
- to blackmail and extort money as a ransom
What Happens During A DDoS Attack?
Hackers meticulously plan DDoS attacks. It’s as if hackers are preparing an army to attack your website.
They establish a device network.
They usually infect computers and mobile phones with malware by hacking into them. (In the past, DDoS attackers have also exploited CCTV and DVR cameras to attack websites.)
Later on, the virus will allow them to send queries to the targeted website from the infected device. And this collection of machines is known as a botnet (their army). Hackers can even buy a botnet that is easily available on the dark web to skip this stage.
They send out tens of thousands of “fake” queries.
They direct the devices to submit queries to your web server using malware on every device in the botnet.
They overload your server with requests it can’t manage.
Each request reduces a fixed number of resources. As more demands arrive, your resources get depleted. This causes it to crash, and as a result, your website will be unavailable.
Even if a hacker is unable to launch a flood attack and take your site offline. The attack will still have a significant impact on the speed and performance of your site. Your site’s visitors will be unable to view or navigate it.
When your website is subjected to a DDoS attack, you must act quickly. The longer your website is offline, the more clients and revenue you will lose.
What kind of damage may a DDoS attack cause?
DDoS attacks can make a website unavailable or slow it down. This could cause a negative user experience, a loss of business, and mitigation expenses.
The following is a breakdown of the costs:
- Loss of business due to website inaccessibility. Customer support costs to respond to service disruption-related questions
- The cost of preventing an attack by hiring security or support services
- The most significant expense is the negative customer experience and brand reputation.
How Can You Protect Your WordPress Website From a DDoS Attack?
Regular security measures will not function because a DDoS volumetric attack is an external attack. To secure your website from hackers, we recommend installing a security scanner and using WP hardening measures. While those safeguards should still be in place, when it comes to DDoS, you must take a different strategy. We’ll go through four steps you may take to prevent DDoS attacks:
- Set Up A Firewall
- Keep an eye on your site’s traffic and data usage.
- Geoblocking should be implemented.
- These countermeasures can be used to both prevent and detect DDoS attacks.
These countermeasures can be used to both prevent and detect DDoS attacks. You can take steps to mitigate a DDoS attack and save your website from failing if you identify it early on.
A web application firewall plugin will analyze the requests that come to your WP site. It will identify malicious traffic requests and prevent them from reaching your site. Thus preventing any hacking attempts.
It’s simple to set up a firewall on your WordPress site. There are many WP firewall plugins available that allow you to quickly set up a firewall on your site. But, DDoS attacks differ greatly, and not all WordPress firewalls will be effective. A firewall that guards against DDoS attacks is required. These firewalls can detect a DDoS attack and prevent certain traffic requests.
Let expand this, so you have a better grasp. But, to keep things simple, we won’t go into too much detail on the technical aspects.
We must deal with two types of traffic requests in this case:
- The first type of request makes use of your WordPress setup. Such a request can launch your WP installation when you visit yourdomain.com/about-us.
Your WordPress site will load, and your web browser will display the About Us page of your WordPress site. All WordPress application firewalls capture these traffic requests.
- Your server is used in the second type of request. It does not need the loading of your WordPress site. Yourdomain.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/image1.png, for example, requests one of your image files from your WordPress directory. Because the firewall is deployed on your WordPress site rather than on the server, many WordPress firewalls will be unable to catch this request.
To defend against DDoS attacks, you’ll need a firewall that can handle both types of requests. The MalCare WordPress security plugin includes a powerful firewall. MalCare will soon release a new and improved WordPress firewall. This firewall can record both types of requests and lessen the danger of DDoS attacks on your WP site.
The firewall is set up when MalCare is installed on your WordPress site. You can access the firewall via the MalCare dashboard. Go to Security after selecting your site.
You may see the details of the firewall’s activities right here. You can check to see if hackers are attempting to log in to your site. You may also see which IP addresses are being blocked by the firewall.
This will assist you in determining whether the DDoS attack is also a brute force attack.
Keep an eye on your site’s traffic.
There are no indicators that a DDoS attack is underway. It can happen quickly and unexpectedly. DDoS attacks are often mistaken as a site issue. Such as an incompatibility issue or a malfunctioning plugin. They may also believe that the WordPress host is having server issues. It could take hours or days for the site owner to notice that they are being attacked.
A good strategy to prevent a DDoS attack is to detect it early and halt it before it does significant damage. You’ll need a real-time traffic log for this.
The incoming traffic to your WordPress site will be monitored via a traffic log. You’ll need a traffic log to capture both types of requests outlined in the Firewalls section.
If you’ve installed MalCare, you’ll have access to a traffic log right away. To see this log, go to the MalCare dashboard and look for the option ‘Traffic Logs’ under the firewall.
You’ll find a list of IP addresses that have requested to access your site inside. You can see everything about the requests, such as when they were made and which page or file they requested. You can even find out which country they came from.
You can see this record right away if you discover your site’s speed has slowed or is down. You can also see if you’re getting unusually high traffic. You can be confident it’s a DDoS attack if you notice a rapid increase in traffic demands.
Early detection of an attack can let you take quick action to stop it.
Keep track of how much data your website uses.
Hackers overload your server and drain its resources in a DDoS attack. In your web hosting account, you may check the statistics and resource usage of your website. If your site is not responding, you should verify how much of your website’s resources are being used.
Access your dashboard by going to your web hosting account. Select ‘Manage hosting’ from the drop-down menu. Most web providers will display your WordPress site’s usage statistics here.
Normally, it takes a long time for your website to achieve its greatest capacity. These numbers should be in the mid-range. Unless you’re running a large website on a low-cost hosting package.
Once a month, we recommend that you check your usage statistics. If your website becomes unusable unexpectedly, look at your usage data. It will help you determine if there is a surge. This is a sign of a DDoS attack.
Knowing where to look for these statistics will help you figure out what’s going on with your website. You can detect an oncoming DDoS attack early on and stop it from shutting down your website.
Putting Geoblocking in Effect
Mostly, the majority of DDoS requests directed at your site originate from one or two nations. If you detect a concentration of requests in a particular country in the traffic log, you can block all IP addresses from that country.
This will aid in stopping the attack from succeeding by lowering its intensity. Remember that you can use blocking an entire country as a temporary method to reduce a DDoS attack. It works effectively when combined with the other steps listed above.
But, as a stand-alone measure of WP DDoS security, we do not propose banning an entire nation. Hackers can use proxy servers to bounce requests off many servers. This makes it appear as if the hack came from somewhere else.
There are a few plugins you may use to prevent a country from viewing your website. You can access the dashboard and choose your site if you’ve installed MalCare.
After that, choose Manage and Geoblocking.
You can then save your modifications after selecting the countries you want to block. You can use the same procedure to unblock countries.
These three steps will go a long way toward preventing and managing DDoS attacks on your website. In the event that your website is already under assault, here is what you can do.
How Can a DDoS Attack on Your WordPress Site Be Avoided?
We understand that a DDoS attack is distinct since it is directed at your server. As a result, putting in place standard WP site security measures will not be enough. If you believe your website is being attacked, take the following steps right away:
Get in touch with your site host.
If you’re experiencing a DDoS attack, you should contact your web host right away. Inform them of the incident and ask them what steps they may take to protect themselves. They may recommend temporarily taking your site offline to safeguard your web server. This will halt the attack. Now you can take preventative actions such as installing a firewall.
Because a DDoS attack differs from a typical attack, standard security measures are insufficient. Hiring expert security services may be in your best interests. They will take steps to assist you in stopping the attack. To avoid future attacks, they will also install anti-DDoS protection on your site.
Install a security plugin to your browser.
DDoS assaults are often used in conjunction with other hacking techniques. Such as brute force attacks or data theft. They hack into your site to steal confidential data or deface it while you are busy correcting the DDoS attack. On your WordPress site, we recommend that you install a security plugin right away.
Plugins like these can help protect your WordPress site from typical hacking techniques. Such as brute force attacks, spam links, and SQL injections. If your site is compromised, the plugin will notify you of the infected files so you may clear up the hack as soon as possible.
In the odd event that you are unable to stop the attack, you could simply wait it out as a last resort. DDoS attacks will come to an end at some point. For eCommerce sites and major enterprises, this is not a realistic choice. Because the expenses of recovery and financial losses will be prohibitive. It might also spell doom for small sites that rely on ad revenue, such as bloggers.
What should you do if your WordPress site is being attacked by a DDoS attack?
Even if you can plan ahead of time and try to avoid DDoS attacks in WordPress, what should you do if you are attacked? During a DDoS attack, you should take the following quick actions:
Inform your teammates.
When a crisis occurs, working together will provide you the most power. If you’re experiencing a DDoS attack, make sure to notify your teammates. This way, they’re aware of what’s going on and can assist you with countermeasures.
Notify your clients
Customers will be unable to log into their accounts or buy anything if the website under attack is a WooCommerce store. Giving no notice or explanation at such a crucial time could be damaging to your reputation. So, inform them via email or social media that your site is experiencing technical difficulties and will be back up and running soon.
Get in touch with your hosting and security company.
Contact your WordPress hosting provider after notifying coworkers and customers. Because attackers may be targeting their systems, it’s best if they’re aware of the problem. They might even be able to assist you. Furthermore, it is critical to contact your security provider now. They can assist you in developing better and faster countermeasures because dealing with attacks is part of their job.
Put your responses into action
If you have any countermeasures on hand, this is when they will come in handy. As soon as an attack occurs, the countermeasures usually function right away. It is preferable if you prepare this ahead of time. If you don’t have a specialist security system in place. Ask your security provider, as most of them provide emergency response services.
Evaluate the effectiveness of the countermeasure
Don’t forget to assess the effectiveness of the countermeasures as they are implemented! Are they successful? Or are the attackers gaining the upper hand? That way, you’ll be able to adapt your responses in the event of another attack. Let’s hope this isn’t the case, but it’s best to be safe than sorry.
DoS and DDoS Attacks: What’s the Difference?
Attacks that cause a DoS and DDoS are quite similar. The only thing that separates them is their size. Single DoS attacks originate from a single location. Whereas DDoS (distributed) attacks originate from many locations, which are frequently spoofs.
The attacker uses one or more computers in a DoS or DDoS attack. DoS attacks are at one extreme of the spectrum, while DDoS attacks are at the other. DDoS attacks on a wide scale can affect hundreds or thousands of systems. The growth of the DDoS/DDoS business is responsible for the increase in DoS/DDoS attacks.
DDoS attacks are a serious cyber danger that can seriously harm your WP site and your business. DDoS attacks have become quite common in recent years. The more popular your WordPress site becomes, the more appealing it is to hackers.
But, preventive methods can help you avoid and prepare for such attacks. The measures outlined above will aid you in preventing DDoS attacks in WordPress. They will also keep your website safe from attacks in general.
But what if you’re already being targeted? Don’t be alarmed. To try to minimize the challenges and have your site up and running, follow the steps outlined above.
We hope this post helped you to block and prevent a DDoS attack on the WordPress website.