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Internet background noise

Internet background noise

(also IBN)

Internet background noise definition

Internet background noise is internet traffic that internet systems and networks generate without direct user involvement.

The volume of background noise is considerable, and monitoring or analyzing it can provide insights into the health and security of a network. For instance, an unexpected increase in background noise may indicate a cybersecurity issue. Researchers study this noise to understand large-scale internet phenomena, network infrastructure, and the evolution of online threats.

See also: port scanning, botnet

Examples of internet background noise

  • Automatic updates. Many software programs and devices automatically check for and download updates.
  • DNS queries. They are an essential part of internet operations. Computers send out these requests to translate domain names into IP addresses.
  • Routing protocols. Networks use various protocols to manage how packets are routed from one place to another.
  • Port scanning. To identify potential targets, hackers may send signals to various IP addresses or ports to see which ones respond, indicating they’re active and potentially vulnerable.
  • Botnet traffic. Networks of infected computers generate a lot of background noise as they communicate with command-and-control servers, perform actions like sending out spam emails, or participate in DDoS attacks.

Further reading

Ultimate digital security