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China Regains Top Spot As Source Of Malignant Online Traffic: Akamai

After being unseated last quarter by Indonesia, China has regained its spot as the source of observed attack traffic in the third quarter of 2013. According to cloud service provider Akamai Technologies latest State of the Internet Report, China retook the lead contributing around 35% of total malignant Internet traffic- such as Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks – across the world even as the third quarter of 2013 saw fewer attacks - 281 - compared to the previous quarter.

Attack Traffic And Security

Indonesia, which had surprised many by overtaking China the previous quarter, fell back to second place after its share of attack traffic fell from 38% to 20% this quarter. Overall, the distribution of attack traffic remains heavily weighted towards the Asia Pacific region, which contributes a significant 68% to total attack traffic with Indonesia and China contributing a combined 55%. The Internet content delivery provider maintains a distributed set of unadvertised agents deployed across the Internet that log connection attempts, which the company classifies as attack traffic. Akamai identifies the top countries from which attack traffic originates, as well as the top ports targeted by these attacks based on data collected by these agents. After dropping to third place in the second quarter, Port 445 (Microsoft-DS) returned to its spot as the most targeted port in the third quarter, drawing 23 percent of observed attacks. Port 80 (WWW [HTTP]) and Port 443 (SSL [HTTPS]) dropped to second and third place at 14 and 13 percent, respectively. Port 445 was the most targeted port in eight of the top 10 countries/regions, the only exceptions being China and Indonesia. Port 1433 (Microsoft SQL Server) was the top target for China, and Port 443 was the most targeted from Indonesia. "Although the number of DDoS attacks reported by Akamai customers in the third quarter declined from the previous quarter, we believe that 2013 will ultimately be a significantly more active year for DDoS attacks than 2012," warned David Belson, the report’s editor. "As of the end of the third quarter, customers had already reported more DDoS attacks than they did in all of 2012."

Global Average and Average Peak Connection Speeds

The same report also highlighted that global average connection speed continued its upward trend in the third quarter of 2013, climbing 10% over the previous quarter to 3.6 Mbps. A total of 122 countries/regions that qualified for inclusion saw average connection speeds increase during the third quarter, with growth ranging from 0.5 percent in Namibia (to 1.1 Mbps) to a 76 percent increase in Nepal (to 3.6 Mbps). Average connection speeds saw a 29 percent year-over-year increase, with all of the top 10 countries/regions climbing 27 percent or more.  Globally, 133 qualifying countries/regions saw year-over-year increases in average connection speeds, from 0.2 percent in Egypt (to 1.2 Mbps) to 259 percent in Réunion (to 6.8 Mbps). Year over year, the global average peak connection speed grew 13% over the third quarter of 2012. Yearly increases among the top 10 countries/regions ranged from 15 percent in Latvia to 63 percent in Singapore. Worldwide, 115 qualifying countries/regions showed yearly growth in average connection speeds, with increases ranging from 0.3 percent in South Africa (to 11.9 Mbps) to 111 percent in Palestine (to 19.9 Mbps). "In the third quarter of 2013, we observed that long-term growth in average and average peak connection speeds remained strong, as did growth in global broadband and high broadband adoption rates. We believe these trends point to continued improvement in the quality and performance of Internet connectivity in countries around the world," Belson explained. Below is an infographic outlining the findings of Akamai's latest The State Of The Internet Report:

Daniel Goh is the founder and chief editor of Young | Upstarts, as well as an F&B entrepreneur. Daniel has a background in public relations, and is interested in issues in entrepreneurship, small business, marketing, public relations and the online space. He can be reached at daniel [at] youngupstarts [dot] com.

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