In the first quarter of 2024 [1] [3], DDoS attacks in Europe [1] [3] [4], the Middle East [1] [3] [4], and Africa (EMEA) have surpassed North America as the most targeted region [1] [3] [4], with the UK leading at 26% [2], followed by Saudi Arabia at 22% and Germany ranking third.


The financial services sector in EMEA is the most targeted industry [2] [3], with DNS attacks being the most prevalent type [4]. EMEA saw nearly 2,500 DDoS attacks in 2023 [2], almost three times the total in APJ and LATAM combined [2], with the rise in attacks attributed to ongoing conflicts such as the Russia-Ukraine war and the Israel-Hamas conflict [1] [3]. The emergence of low-cost DDoS boosters has lowered the entry barrier for attackers [3] [4], exacerbating the threat landscape [3]. Geopolitical motives have increased the complexity and severity of DDoS attacks in EMEA [2], with hacktivism and state-sponsored attacks on the rise [2]. Richard Meeus [4], Director of Security Technology and Strategy [4], EMEA [1] [2] [3] [4], Akamai [1] [4], expects EMEA targeted DDoS incidents to continue rising in the coming months [4], especially with high-profile events on the horizon [4]. EMEA is the only region where DDoS attacks have consistently risen since 2019 [1] [4], partly due to ongoing conflicts such as the Russia-Ukraine war and the Israel-Hamas conflict [1] [3] [4]. The UK is the primary target for DDoS attackers in EMEA [1] [4], facing over a quarter of all attacks in the region since 2019 [1]. Financial services in EMEA are also heavily targeted [1] [4], with over half of all DDoS attacks directed at this sector [1]. Multiple attack vectors [1] [2] [3], including DNS flooding [1], UDP fragmentation [1], and NTP reflection [1] [3], are commonly used by threat actors to increase success rates [1]. The emergence of DDoS-for-hire services has further lowered the barrier to entry for attackers [1] [4], with conflicts like those in Russia [1], Ukraine [1], and Israel-Hamas contributing to the rise of DDoS attacks in EMEA [1] [4].


The increase in DDoS attacks in EMEA [1] [4], driven by geopolitical motives and the availability of low-cost attack tools, poses a significant threat to organizations in the region. Mitigating these attacks will require a multi-faceted approach, including improved cybersecurity measures, threat intelligence sharing, and collaboration between public and private sectors. As high-profile events continue to unfold, the frequency and severity of DDoS attacks in EMEA are expected to rise, highlighting the need for proactive defense strategies and ongoing vigilance.