Navigating the Bot Ecosystem

Bots touch virtually every part of our digital lives — and now account for over half of all web traffic.

This represents both a problem and a paradox. Bots can be good, and bots can be bad; removing good bots is bad and leaving bad bots can be even worse.

Having said that, few businesses, application owners, users, designers, security practitioners, or network engineers can distinguish the difference between good bots and bad bots in their operating environments.

As the speed of business continues to accelerate and automate, the instantaneous ability to distinguish legitimate, automated communications from illegitimate will be among the most crucial security controls we can on board.

Differentiating Between Good & Bad Bots

Indeed, as the volume of automated communication over the internet has dramatically increased,and according to Radware’s research, today’s internet now represents a majority (52%) of bot traffic. But how much of that traffic is “good” vs. “bad”?

[You may also like: Good Bots Vs. Bad Bots: What’s The Impact On Your Business?]

Some help populate our news feeds, tell the weather, provide stock quotes and control search rankings. We use bots to book travel, access online customer support, even to turn our lights on and off and unlock our doors.

But other bots are designed for more mischievous purposes — including account takeover, content scraping, payment fraud and denial-of-service (DoS) attacks. These bots account for as much as 26% of total internet traffic, and their attacks are often carried out by competitors looking to undermine your competitive advantage, steal your information or increase your online marketing costs.

These “bad bots” represent one of the fastest growing and gravest threats to websites, mobile applications and application programming interfaces (APIs). And they’re fueling a rise in automated attacks against businesses, driving the need for bot management.

[You may also like: Key Considerations In Bot Management Evaluation]

In the early days, the use of bots was limited to small scraping attempts or spamming. Today, things are vastly different. Bots are used to take over user accounts, perform DDoS attacks, abuse APIs, scrape unique content and pricing information, increase costs of competitors, deny inventory turnover and more. It’s no surprise, then, that Gartner mentioned  bot management at the peak of inflated expectations under the high benefit category in its Hype Cycle for Application Security 2018.

The ULTIMATE Guide to Bot Management

Recognizing the inescapable reality of today’s evolving bots, we have released the Ultimate Guide to Bot Management. This e-book provides an overview of evolving bot threats, outlines options for detection and mitigation, and offers a concise buyer guide to help evaluate potential bot management solutions.

From the generational leaps forward in bot design and use, to the techniques leveraged to outsmart and cloak themselves from detection, we’ve got you covered. The guide also dives into the bot problems across web, API and SDK / Mobile applications, and the most effective architectural strategies in pursuing solutions.

We hope you enjoy this tool as it becomes a must-have reference manual and provides you with the necessary map to navigate the murky waters and mayhem of bot management!

Read “The Ultimate Guide to Bot Management” to learn more.

Download Now

Carl Herberger

Carl is an IT security expert and responsible for Radware’s global security practice. With over a decade of experience, he began his career working at the Pentagon evaluating computer security events affecting daily Air Force operations. Carl also managed critical operational intelligence for computer network attack programs to aid the National Security Council and Secretary of the Air Force with policy and budgetary defense. Carl writes about network security strategy, trends, and implementation.

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