Alert - Increase in DDoS Extortion Activity

Number: AL21-010
Date: 16 June 2021


This Alert is intended for IT professionals and managers of notified organizations.


An Alert is used to raise awareness of a recently identified cyber threat that may impact cyber information assets, and to provide additional detection and mitigation advice to recipients.  The Canadian Centre for Cyber Security ("Cyber Centre") is also available to provide additional assistance regarding the content of this Alert to recipients as requested.


The Cyber Centre is aware of a recent increase in Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) activity which is being carried out by malicious actors to extort victims for payment. The Cyber Centre has received reports from trusted partners of Canadian organizations being targeted by this activity.


The Cyber Centre is aware of open-source reporting describing a recent increase in DDoS extortion activity. The Cyber Centre has also received reports from trusted partners indicating an increase in activity targeting Canadian organizations in multiple sectors.

Although reports vary on the techniques used to carry out the DDoS, the activity consists of contact from the threat actor, a demonstration of the DDoS capability, and demands of payment in Bitcoin as ransom to cease the DDoS activity [1],[2].

In cases of DDoS extortion, see the Cyber Centre’s guidance for Preventing and Recovering from extortion for guidance on dealing with demands of payment [3]. Refer also to the Cyber Centre’s guidance for Protecting Your Organization Against Denial-of-Service Attacks [4] for more information.


[1] The Rapid Resurgence of DDoS Extortion

[2] Ransom DDoS Extortion Actor “Fancy Lazarus” Returns

[3] How to Prevent and Recover

[4] Protecting Your Organization Against Denial-of-Service Attacks


The Canadian Centre for Cyber Security (Cyber Centre) operates as part of the Communications Security Establishment.  We are Canada's national authority on cyber security and we lead the government's response to cyber security events. As Canada's national computer security incident response team, the
Cyber Centre works in close collaboration with government departments, critical infrastructure, Canadian businesses and international partners to prepare for, respond to, mitigate, and recover from cyber events. We do this by providing authoritative advice and support, and coordinating information
sharing and incident response. The Cyber Centre is outward-facing, welcoming partnerships that help build a stronger, more resilient cyber space in Canada.

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