When billions of users, or bots, access the same website at the same time, it is most likely that that website will go down, that the server, or servers, will not be able to stand up to so much demand.
That is the basis, explained very simply and quickly, of a DDoS attack, one of the main attacks on the web in recent years, responsible for the daily drop of web pages.
There are attacks that last a few minutes, others that can last days, others more intense, others milder … and then there is the attack that Microsoft claims to have managed to avoid, one that consumed 2.4 terabytes per second, the worst DDoS attack ever recorded. .
Microsoft say what the attack targeted an Azure customer in Europe, 140 percent more powerful than previously recorded in 2020. So far the record was held by a 2.3 Tbps attack on Amazon Web Services.
The attack lasted more than 10 minutes, and the traffic bursts had varying power levels. The older ones did reach 2.4 Tbps, while others “only” stayed at 0.55 Tbps and 1.7 Tbps.
Azure was able to stay online throughout the attack, precisely thanks to its ability to absorb dozens of terabits of this type of attack.
It is very difficult to avoid them because the source of the attacks is not a single IP address, nor a defined group. In this case, the attack traffic originated from approximately 70,000 sources and from various countries in the Asia-Pacific region, such as Malaysia, Vietnam, Taiwan, Japan, and China, as well as the United States.
While some services decide to put a “prove you are human” when they encounter this situation, and others put cloudflare’s “anti-DDoS” mode, others prefer to queue people (as happened with the service of Free DC NFTs During last week). It seems that Microsoft prefers to be more transparent with what is happening and not penalize normal users.