Secure Your Xbox: How to Prevent DDoS Attacks with Ease.
The more our gaming experiences becomes connected, the greater the opportunities for cyberattacks and other forms of exploitation. Gamers on any platform can fall victim to this, but for this article, we’ll focus on Xbox only. However, many of the elements discussed here can be applied to other gaming platforms.
The most common attack encountered in online games is the Distributed-Denial-of-Service or DDoS attack. This can easily disrupt an online gaming session, especially if you’ve made too many enemies or are constantly at the top of the leaderboards. Some people are simply unable to handle the loss and will do anything to stop you.
What is a DDoS attack?
A Distributed Denial of Service attack (DDoS attack) means that an attacker floods the victim’s network or servers with a surge of internet traffic so large that their infrastructure is overwhelmed by the number of access requests, slowing down services or taking the service completely offline and preventing legitimate users from accessing the service.
While the DDoS attack is one of the least sophisticated categories of cyberattacks, it can also be one of the most disruptive and powerful, knocking websites and digital services offline for significant periods of time – up to from a few seconds to several weeks.
For gaming, DoS or DDoS attacks can be used as retaliation when a multiplayer match doesn’t go the way of the attacker or to gain an advantage in the competition. Xbox and game publishers monitor instances of network manipulation and enforce these violations.
What to do when your Xbox suffers a DDoS attack
If a DDoS attack is occurring on your Xbox, you should first reset your internet router. You need to completely turn off the router for about ten minutes to try to stop the DDoS attack. A DDoS attack is only as successful as the connection it has. If the botnet can no longer connect to a server, router or other entity, the attack will no longer work. When resetting the router, you may get a new forward-facing IP address when connected to the Xbox network.
Next, contact your Internet Service Provider (ISP). If you let them know you’re under a DDoS attack, they might be able to trace the source. They can then involve law enforcement trained in these attacks and attempt to track down the identity of the attacker in question. Xbox Support is unable to help you with this but can help with the next step.
If you know the gamer tag of the person(s) attacking you, you can report them to Microsoft’s Xbox Support team. Press the Xbox button and watch recent players. Find the gamer tag, click on the profile, then select “report”. Under the report, select the “tampering” option, add more information for easier assistance in the comment box, and finally block this person. Xbox reports are spotty at best, so at the very least blocking them out should offer some peace of mind.
How to avoid DDoS attacks on Xbox
To prevent the possibility of a DoS or DDoS attack:
- Do not use any app that can expose your network’s IP address. Social applications, including those designed for online multiplayer or VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) software, can expose your IP to other participants in your session.
- Use a Virtual Private Network (VPN). It will encrypt your internet traffic and protect your online identity. The service will route your connection through a remote server instead of your internet service provider. A good VPN also hides your IP address and encrypts all the data you send and receive.
- Avoid using Wi-Fi hotspots. Even if they are secure and password-protected, attackers have different ways to intercept Internet traffic.
- Regularly use virus and malware scanners on your computer, but remember to choose a reliable program.