Cybercriminals are stealthy in their attacks — especially when financial gains are involved. With this type of attack, hitting the jackpot requires time and patience. Regardless, cybercriminals also employ “noisy” attacks, or ones intended for victims and other website visitors to see. These typically promote very radical or personal views on various subjects. Some common attacks, however, can be either noisy or stealthy, and this includes URL redirection attacks.
A web application firewall — also known as a WAF — is basically a website’s gatekeeper. Once installed, it monitors all incoming traffic to determine whether website visitors are legitimate or malicious. It then denies access to suspicious traffic, blocking out nefarious players.
You may think that your small business’s website doesn’t receive enough traffic to necessitate a gatekeeper, but consider this: More than 60% of all internet traffic is made up of bots. Of course, not all bots are dangerous; some serve a positive purpose, such as search engine crawling. But many pose a significant threat to your website and its visitors. These bad bots visit websites for negative purposes — crawling a site’s code in search of security vulnerabilities, for instance.
Despite what your lightning-fast Wi-Fi connection may indicate, the internet is not instantaneous. When someone visits your website, it takes time for content such as text, pictures, and videos to travel from the point of origin to wherever the website’s visitor is located. The further apart the two points are, the longer it takes for the content to be delivered.
Content delivery networks exist to expedite this process. Imagine your business is based in Boston and someone visits your website from San Francisco. If the content had to travel completely across the country, the website load time would be extremely long. CDNs improve this process by storing content on servers located throughout the country in data centers called “points of presence.”