Bots have become a staple of modern companies. Unfortunately, however, innovation has a tendency to introduce new risks, paving the way for pesky attackers. Therefore, it goes without saying that bots need security reinforcement.
Organisations use bots to perform automated tasks. Today, their deployments are far and wide, including chatbots, monitoring, general robotic process automation, search engines, and more. As they become more widespread in the enterprise landscape, their uses will most definitely continue to grow. Look at these as your ‘good’ bots. Of course, if there are good bots, then there must also be bad bots. Bad bots are bad news, as they can get into all sorts of mischief across the enterprise landscape.
Good bots gone bad
These malicious bots are a very real, modern problem. They can exploit vulnerabilities, harvest intelligence, expose data, and render your website inoperable, and that’s only scratching the surface. Their malicious capabilities span all industries and include very specific threats such as auction sniping and gift card fraud. Furthermore, in an age where the term ‘DDoS’ makes executives quake in their boots, it may be very frightening for them to know that bad bots can also lead to this style of attack. Also in the list of bad bot behaviour is their ability to spread spam, and quickly.
Thus, business do not want, and cannot afford to have, these bots gaining access to their sites. The havoc they wreak is, in many cases, difficult to repair, and their effect can be felt after many years. In fact, the effect on brand reputation alone is too much to lose.
However, enterprises do want good, useful bots to have access to their website. For example, businesses will want Google’s bot to have access so it can index a page. Otherwise, that page may not appear in search results. Fortunately, a solution to block and welcome the right bots is available in the form of bot management.
Bot management for the better
A bot manager behaves as the gatekeeper for your site. Any malicious or unknown bot (because it’s not worth the risk) is turned away. On the other hand, it will allow the useful ones bots and humans through without causing them inconvenience.
Bot managers can delve into the intricacies beyond just good and bad. They can often identify between bots and human visitors, as well as bot reputation. By analysing the reputation, it can then allocate good bots onto a whitelist. Furthermore, they can also challenge potential bots with Captcha tests and the like. Thus, this nifty little software takes care of all the identification and access granting for your business.
There are lots of bot management software solutions popping up around the market today. InStart is a great example and boasts a unique approach to the pressing problem. It works by collecting signals across the client and the cloud for insight into how automated traffic interacts with your web app. Thus, it can utilise low-level fingerprints in-browser to identify between humans and bots – even the complex ones. The solution is always ticking over for you, creating rules every time new bot activity is thrown into the mix. That way, attacks are mitigated quickly and effectively.
Also leading the way in bot management is Distil Networks, which offers solutions for web, API, and mobile apps. What’s more, Distil Networks’ offerings cater for a range of industries, from airline, to finance, to digital publishing. Distil’s holistic approach prevents bots from going directly to your API server. In turn, these bots can’t exploit the APIs supporting your mobile apps. What’s especially handy about this offering is that it can be deployed in any environment, whether that be cloud, on-premise, hybrid, and so on. Thus, Distil Networks has something for everyone.
If you love a bit of Software-as-a-Service, you’ll also love DataDome. Their offering of real-time bot protection delivers high-detection speed and accuracy. Better still, it can run on autopilot. For businesses looking to make life easier for their IT departments, DataDome can help you achieve just that, eliminating the stress of on-call incidents. Their worldwide points of presence means you have an always-on solution blocking and authorising. In particular, DataDome is popular among ecommerce businesses, with an impressive client portfolio including the likes of TripAdvisor and BlaBlaCar.
Why not check out our Ask the Expert episode with Jason Soroko at Sectigo?