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OWASP Periodic Table of Vulnerabilities - Denial of Service (Application Based)

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Denial of Service (Application Based)

Root Cause Summary

The root cause of an Application Based denial of service is when an attacker uses/exhausts/depletes all of the resources (such as bandwidth, database connections, disk storage, CPU, memory, threads, or application specific resources) on a system preventing legitimate users from using the system. To prevent depletion of resources the application must restrict the size or amount of resources that are requested or used.

Browser / Standards Solution


Perimeter Solution

See Brute Force (Generic)Generic

Framework Solution


Custom Framework Solution


Custom Code Solution

Profile resource-dependent transactions and build transaction queues and alerting when queues reach thresholds. Enforce transaction-based rate limits.

Discussion / Controversy

Denial of service vulnerabilities has other names including “resource exhaustion” and “resource depletion” and there are other types of denial of service attacks different from application including network and connection based.


OWASP - Application Denial of Service

CWE-400: Uncontrolled Resource Consumption ('Resource Exhaustion')

CAPEC -119: Resource Depletion