Bot-driven credential abuse and DDoS attacks use advanced techniques to threaten systems, according to Akamai’s State of the Internet report. The report gathered information from its various platforms to analyze attack data globally, according to a press release.

Using bots to abuse stolen credentials is not a new tactic, but an evolving strategy for attacking internet-driven businesses.

Akamai found that threats are greatest in the hospitality industry in particular. Researchers studied nearly 12 billion bot requests and 3.9 billion malicious login attempts, all targeting airlines, cruise lines, and hotels. Nearly 40% of the activity across hotel and travel sites were “impersonators of known browsers,” also known as vectors for fraud, said the press release.

SEE: Cybersecurity in 2018: A roundup of predictions (Tech Pro Research)

Akamai analyzed the attack traffic geographically, and found that Russia, China, and Indonesia were the major developers of credential abuse attacks on the hospitality industry.

“These countries have historically been large centers for cyberattacks, but the attractiveness of the hospitality industry appears to have made it a significant target for hackers to carry out bot-driven fraud,” Akamai senior security advocate and report editor Martin McKeay said in the release.

The report also outlined advances in DDoS attacks, revealing the new techniques cybercriminals are using that caused a 16% increase in attacks this year. One attack was coordinated over a group chat and conducted by human volunteers, which strays from the normal botnet-run attack, said the release. Another tactic targeted DNS servers with bursts of malicious content, rather than a constant, sustained attack. This strategy makes it more difficult to mitigate attacks because of the sensitivity of DNS servers, allowing computers to find them via internet, said Akamai.

“Both of these attack types illustrate how attackers are always adapting to new defenses to carry out their nefarious activities,” McKeay said in the release. “These attacks, coupled with the record-breaking 1.35 Tbps memcached attacks from earlier this year, should serve as a not-so-gentle reminder that the security community can never grow complacent.”

Building a slide deck, pitch, or presentation? Here are the big takeaways:

  • Bot-driven credential abuse is targeting the hospitality industry, with attacks coming primarily from Russia, China, and Indonesia. — Akamai, 2018
  • DDos attacks are up 16% since last year, reminding business professionals that attackers are always developing new strategies. — Akamai, 2018