How Universities Can Stop Bot Attacks

In the world of cybersecurity, bad bot attacks are more than just a nuisance. They waste time and resources, skew data and make it challenging to understand your website’s performance. Stop bot attacks can also impact your marketing efforts if the traffic isn’t real.

Is there a way to stop bots?

A bot is a computer program designed to perform automated tasks. Bots have many legitimate uses, such as scouring the web for new content or scanning images for text. However, malicious bots can perform automated attacks at scale for the purpose of stealing passwords, personal information and credit card details, or even accessing other closely linked accounts. Infections can occur through a variety of methods, including exploiting unpatched vulnerabilities and software misconfigurations, social engineering attacks or drive-by downloads.

Once a device is infected, attackers gain unauthorized access to sensitive or confidential information, including usernames and passwords, financial details, bank accounts and medical records. Criminals can then use these credentials to perform denial of service attacks, carry out spam campaigns or engage in phishing and credential stuffing.

To reduce the risk of these types of cyberattacks, universities need to monitor and detect bot activity. While tools like rate limiting can help, these strategies overlook a lot of malicious bot activity, which is why it’s important to look for solutions that utilize behavioral analytics and fingerprinting to identify abnormal browsing patterns or behavior. Detecting these patterns can be as simple as analyzing the user agent, a string that indicates the type of software being used to access the website.