Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) is a major protocol used to facilitate Internet routing between different networks. As the Internet has grown in scale and complexity, BGP has become a critical component of the Internet’s infrastructure. BGP allows network operators to exchange routing information and make decisions about the most efficient paths for Internet traffic to travel.
The Need for BGP
The Internet is made up of a network of smaller networks where the smaller networks are larger pools of routers that are run by a smaller organization. smaller networks, called autonomous systems (AS), may be large organizations or other Internet service providers; campuses, government agencies, Companies, etc.
The Internet is a vast and decentralized network of networks, consisting of thousands of autonomous systems (ASEs) that are interconnected to facilitate communication and data transfer. BGP is needed to enable these ASs to exchange routing information and route traffic between them. Without BGP, Internet traffic would not be able to flow smoothly between different networks, causing network outages and service disruptions.
BGP allows network operators to control and optimize the flow of traffic within their own networks, ensuring that Internet traffic is routed along the most efficient paths and that congestion and bottlenecks are avoided.
How Does It Work?
In BGP, each autonomous system is responsible for collecting and communicating routing information with its peers-the ASNs to which it is directly connected in the form of network prefix announcements. For example, an AS will check that it is directly connected to some IP addresses, one hop away from others. Communicates the routing information it receives with each peer, spreading this information throughout the network.
BGP uses a variety of criteria to determine the best path for traffic, including the number of AS hops, the amount of available bandwidth, and each AS’s network policies. BGP also supports different types of routing, including path-vector routing and policy-based routing, to give network operators more control over their routing decisions.
External BGP vs Internal BGP
BGP can be used within a single AS (internal BGP, or iBGP) or between different ASes (external BGP, or eBGP). BGP is used to exchange routing information between routers within the same AS, while eBGP is used to exchange routing information between ASes.
BGP is commonly used to facilitate communication between different ISPs, cloud providers, and other large-scale networks. By exchanging routing information with other ASs, the AS can learn about new paths for traffic and optimize its routing decisions.
Types of BGP Attacks
Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) is one of the basic protocols that make the Internet work.
- BGP Hijacking
In this type of attack, a malicious actor sends false routing information to a victim AS, causing it to route traffic through a different path than intended. This can allow the attacker to intercept or manipulate the traffic.
- DDoS Attacks
Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) works by having the ASes publish routing information to their peers. ASes are able to analyze data, update their records and relay the information to other relevant systems. This creates an opportunity for a distributed DoS (DDoS) attack. Attackers create a fake advertisement that an AS wants to update routing information, causing a flood of traffic and data that can overwhelm the system.
BGP with Check Point Solutions
BGP is a fundamental part of the way the Internet works. Organizations can use BGP for both internal and external routing. Integrated support for BGP and other dynamic routing protocols with the underlying operating system for Gaia is Check Point Next Generation Firewall. BGP is a core component of Check Point’s DDoS Protector. Check Point can easily route traffic to scrubbing centers and stop an attack with BGP. For more info on selecting the right DDoS protection solution, take a look at our comprehensive DDoS Buyer’s Guide.
Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) is a critical protocol for internet routing, enabling networks to exchange routing information and make informed routing decisions. As the internet continues to grow and evolve, BGP will play an increasingly important role in facilitating connectivity and optimizing network performance. However, BGP is also vulnerable to a variety of attacks, highlighting the need for strong security measures to protect against these threats. Check Point’s solutions provide comprehensive security for BGP and can help organizations protect their networks against these attacks.