XDSL gets heavy on network security, building it into every offering

Oct 20th, 2016

Does your ISP promise security and protection? As a network or connection to the Internet will, on average, be attacked from at least 240 different locations within each 24-hour period, you need to know. Common threats like DoS attacks, brute-force attacks and port scanning can take your system down, lead to loss of data or even distribution of sensitive data – which can destroy your business. XDSL is taking security seriously, making it an integral part of its service offering, spelling out how it protects its customers and challenging other ISPs to step up their services.

Says Johan Olivier, Commercial Manager at XDSL: “Cybercrime cost the South African economy about R5.8 billion in 2015, which equates to around 14% of our GDP… and it’s likely to grow, according to a McAfee study.  XDSL is in the business of networks, hosting and ISP services and we are very familiar with evolving security challenges. To protect our customers, we are making security a part of every solution we offer. Our security team prioritises awareness of changing threats; we put complex protection strategies in place; and proactively monitor network connectivity and communication, constantly scanning for threats and suspicious activities.”

“We believe this level of service should be the norm for all ISPs. It’s the only way to deliver a guaranteed service. This is not possible if security — and the skills to address these threats and attacks – do not exist or need to be acquired by the client through a bolt-on or premium package.”

What do common threats look like?

  • A denial of service (DoS) or distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack tries to make a machine or network resource unavailable by temporarily or indefinitely interrupting or suspending the services of a host connected to the Internet.  XSDL is able to manage DoS and DDoS attacks in various forms, including ICMP and Syn flood, teardrop and peer-to-peer attacks, permanent denial of service, application floods, Nuke, distributed attacks, Rudy, spoofed attacks and even telephony DoS attacks.
  • A brute-force attack is also known as an exhaustive key search attack. It systematically checks all possible keys or passwords until the correct one is found. To protect against these threats, XDSL puts in place theoretical limits on attempts, credential recycling, unbreakable codes and counter measures, and does reverse brute force attacks to check for common or easily broken passwords or codes. For example, our security settings scan for rapidly repeating incorrect logins and add the source to a list to block FTP and SSH up and downstream brute force attacks.
  • Port scanning is an attack that sends client requests to a range of server port addresses on a host to identify the services running on the host and exploit vulnerabilities. For example, gaining access to sensitive data or executing malicious code on the machine remotely. XDSL protects against TCP, SYN, UDP and ACK port scanning, as well as Window and FIN scanning.

How does XDSL protect customers?

Says Olivier: “At XDSL the support and proactive monitoring of connectivity and communication is an integral part of our service offering and underpins our commitment to delivering an excellent customer experience. Our proactive monitoring identifies potential threats and service interruptions in real time and send alerts to appropriate teams for quick action and resolution.”

Proactive monitoring gathers realtime and historical information, identifies patterns, and distributes notification to individuals, groups, dashboards or other systems to ensure network availability is prioritised continuously.

Notes Olivier: “Our firewalls not only give protection, they deliver high SLAs, Quality of Service, and faster resolution times. Our security configurations protect against common threats, identifying network activity and anomalies that suggest attacks or breaches, and blocking them. The benefits to our customers include minimised network downtime and network quality issues, increased business efficiency and productivity.

“It is every businesses’ responsibility to remain aware of changing threats and develop a security strategy that will protect their IP and their data, and mitigate their business risk of downtime. These security strategies need to encompass not just business users and partners but service providers.”

Does your ISP provide the security you need to protect your business?