Bandwidth Leeching Prevention with Http Handlers
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Published: 18 May 2007
In this article, Joseph explains how important it is to implement Http handlers in web applications to prevent bandwidth leeching.
by Joseph Chahine
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Unfortunately, a web server is exposed to many attacks targeting its bandwidth leading many times to a denial of service state on the server.

Bandwidth leeching, also called hotlinking, is described by the practice of hosting on a web server, web pages that contain unauthorized content links, known as hotlinks, direct links, or remote links, to files hosted by another site on another web server, in order to consume the bandwidth of the latter server without having its pages viewed.

A usual case is when multiple pages (frequently hosted under multiple websites to cause more damage) on the internet have links to a website's images, cascading stylesheets, JavaScript files, etc... Whenever these pages are visited, the uplink bandwidth of the targeted web server is consumed. The more the external links to the targeted website's contents are, the more its bandwidth is consumed. At a certain point, the bandwidth won't be enough to serve new connections, it has been leeched!

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