DDoS Attacks Against Global Markets

Published February 4, 2014

DDoS Attacks Against Global Markets

Cyber attackers are trying to manipulate stock prices and trading markets using distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks. Intelligence gathered from nearly a dozen significant DDoS cyber-attacks reveals the devastating market effects on financial services firms and other enterprises. Learn about the types of attacks launched against major companies, financial services organizations and trading platforms, and discover the primary perpetrators responsible for these DDoS cyber-attacks.

What You’ll Learn

In this white paper, you will learn:

  • How DDoS attacks are used for market manipulation
  • Details about 10 DDoS attack campaigns and their market effects
  • The perpetrators, attack methods and their public statements for each campaign
  • The types of malicious actors and their motives
  • The three named groups responsible for most DDoS market attacks
  • The underground ecosystem that supports DDoS cyber attackers

What You Need to Know

  • DDoS attacks have proven to be a significant threat to global enterprises and the availability of online resources.
  • Financial services firms have been a prominent target for economically and ideologically motivated criminals.
  • Complex DDoS campaigns can adversely affect public perception of the targeted enterprise as well the perception of market participants (i.e., investors).
  • Technological limits on DDoS attacks have so far prevented malicious actors from completely bringing down an entire major marketplace, such as the two US securities and commodities exchanges.
  • DDoS attacks keep getting bigger, stronger, longer and more sophisticated, so future attacks remain a possibility.


DDoS attacks hold particular risks for enterprises dealing in sensitive or confidential information:

  • A rising number of DDoS attack campaigns have targeted the financial industry.
  • Malicious actors may have sought to influence individual stock values and commodity markets.
  • Hacktivists, extortionists and blackmailers frequently use DDoS attacks to degrade an organization’s online presence and restrict the availability of its services.

  • Governments are considering the national security implications associated with digital assaults against the critical economic infrastructure provided by financial firms, including trading platforms.

Potential consequences of DDoS attacks

Multi-vector DDoS attacks are now within the capabilities of malicious actors. These attacks can have both immediate and indirect impacts on individual businesses as well as entire markets, such as:

  • A significant DDoS attack campaign that results in denial of service and the disruption of targeted online services.
  • A number of successful compromises that combine infrastructure vulnerabilities with disclosure of sensitive and confidential information or exfiltration of data that leads to a disruption, pause or suspension of operations.
  • The effective use of media as a tool to amplify the perceived effect, disruption and damage caused by extended campaigns 

  • Multi-vector DDoS attacks that lead to extensive scrutiny and loss of public confidence in the targeted firm’s ability to conduct business online successfully.

The key factor for malicious actors in their choice of future targets will be their targets’ susceptibility to the damage that can be induced by these types of attack campaigns.

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