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DDOS Disruption: The Dreaded Aggregation?

Posted in Aggregation, DYN Attacks

Today a DDOS attack disrupted major websites reportedly including Twitter, Spotify, Reddit and even Major League Baseball on the U.S. east coast.   By mid-day a second wave of attacks appeared  underway against Dynamic Network Services, Inc. (Dyn), a domain host company or DNS server.   The first attack started at about 7:00am EST and lasted for more than two hours.  The source of the attacks is presently unknown.

A DNS server links a website address to the website’s domain name, so users can search for  a travel website by its name, not its 10-digit IP address.

This attack may signal a new approach.  Instead of shutting down one website, attackers   prevented end-users from reaching a wide swath of websites.

For insurers, this type of disruption heightens fears of an aggregated loss: one incident over a discrete period of time disrupts website traffic for multiple companies, any number of which may be insureds.  Business interruption for Amazon is bad enough unless you also insure Disqus’ technology risks.  And it appears that today’s attacks cut across all sorts of business lines.  The accumulation risk for insurers who endorse cyber risks to multiple lines of business is a genuine one.  Knowing your portfolio is key.