Written by Sean Valant
Monday, April 29th, 2013
WordPress has been under fire lately, though it is important to note that although WordPress has been the target that there is truly nothing the platform has done to cause these recent circumstances to occur. You may have heard about the recent distributed brute force attack, which is presently on-going still and targets the “admin” user name.
A subsequent, and slightly lower-level attack has since been launched against popular WordPress plugins, like WPSuperCache and W3TotalCache. While we did identify this circumstance very early on and take pre-emptive measure to effective mitigate this attack on our server farm, it simply reiterates a point we often try to make: please make sure your scripts and plugins are always up-to-date.
Metaphorically speaking, having out of date scripts or plugins installed is akin to having a very nice house, with a very nice door with a very nice deadbolt on it that you simply choose to not engage, effectively leaving your door wide open to anyone what wants to walk in and do as they see fit with your property.
As a web host, we provide the house, the door and the lock. We also hand you the key to the lock on the door, but we cannot force you to engage that lock, we can only highly encourage you to do so.
One thing to note in regards to keeping your script installs themselves up to date is that HostGator’s proprietary script install tool, QuickInstall, does allow you to opt in to automatic updates for WordPress and other popular scripts. We highly encourage you to utilize QuickInstall and it’s automatic update functionality.
Please take a moment to log into the dashboards of all of your CMS-backend websites and take a moment to ensure everything is up-to-date. Otherwise, you are choosing not to engage that deadbolt on your front door and ultimately welcoming in all manner of individuals who may not have your best interests in mind.
Written by Sean Valant
Thursday, April 11th, 2013
As I type these words, there is an on-going and highly-distributed, global attack on WordPress installations across virtually every web host in existence. This attack is well organized and again very, very distributed; we have seen over 90,000 IP addresses involved in this attack.
At this moment, we highly recommend you log into any WordPress installation you have and change the password to something that meets the security requirements specified on the WordPress website. These requirements are fairly typical of a secure password: upper and lowercase letters, at least eight characters long, and including “special” characters (^%$#&@*).
You have now changed your WordPress password, correct? Good.
The main force of this attack began last week, then slightly died off, before picking back up again yesterday morning. No one knows when it will end. The symptoms of this attack are a very slow backend on your WordPress site, or an inability to log in. In some instances your site could even intermittently go down for short periods.
We are taking several steps to mitigate this attack throughout our server farm, but in the same breath it is true that in cases like this there is only so much that can actually be done. The servers most likely to experience service interruptions will be VPS and Dedicated servers hosting high numbers of WordPress installations, due to the incredibly high load this attack has been seen to cause.
If you are hosted on a VPS or Dedicated server and you would like for us to take a more severe, heavy-handed approach to mitigate this attack, we can do this via means such as password-protecting (via .htaccess) all wp-login.php files on the server. If you would like our assistance with this, please contact us via normal support channels.
Again, this is a global issue affecting all web hosts. Any further information we could provide at this moment would be purely speculation. Our hope is that this attack ends soon, but it is a reminder that we must all take account security very seriously.
We will update this blog post when we have further information.
If you have just a few WordPress sites, you can add the additional layer of security mentioned above, as well as block this attack, by following the instructions outlined in this article from our KnowledgeBase: http://support.hostgator.com/articles/specialized-help/technical/wordpress/wordpress-login-brute-force-attack
Written by Josh Loe
Thursday, May 13th, 2010
In 2006 HostGator.com moved from Boca Raton, FL. to Houston, TX. We made the move because we could not find enough employees in Florida, also we ran out of space in the tiny office we occupied at the time. We are proud to announce that we once again are faced with this problem and are expanding even more! We have chosen Austin, Tx as our newest location.
We closed on a 102,000 SQFT office building on the East side of Austin and have already started working on getting the office setup. We have been working diligently this past week closing on the office and getting everything in line, just as we did here in Houston back in 06.
When we moved to Houston a lot of our employees stayed in the office for the first few months. We are going to be doing the same in Austin as long as zoning permits it. We are already looking to add a special area called ‘tent city’ for employees to sleep until they get situated in Austin. If you have never bunked with 10+ System Administrators you are missing out! Brent himself will be staying in the office if zoning permits. …
Written by Brent Oxley
Thursday, September 10th, 2009
HostGator recently reached 200,000 active customers and we are on pace to break 300,000 within a year.
I remember when I’d be out celebrating if HostGator managed to get two signups in a week. Now, we’re seeing thousands of signups a week. Back in the day, my celebrating consisted of nothing more than dropping the Ramen noodles or the tuna can I had in my hands and grabbing some sushi for an hour before scrambling back to work. At the time, I was a poor college student who invested every penny I had back into the business I was building.
The HostGator.com domain was registered on October 10, 2002 and here are some statistics about how many active customers we’ve had at a few points since then.
- 2/1/2003: 112 active customers
- 2/1/2004: 1,031 active customers
- 2/1/2005: 6,892 active customers
- 2/1/2006: 21,434 active customers
- 2/1/2007: 50,213 active customers
- 2/1/2008: 92,752 active customers
- 2/1/2009: 157,432 active customers
- Today: 200,000+
How HostGator Came To Be:
I’ve been an entrepreneur since I was a kid. In sixth grade, I sold candy at school and had all the kids in my neighborhood working for me. When I was 14, my cousins and I had a business where we sold watermelons from a truck on the side of a road. The deal we offered was simple, but effective: “2 for $5.”
It wasn’t until I was a sophomore in high school that I got hooked on trying to make money on the Internet. What sucked me in was the paid to surf programs such as AllAdvantage, Bepaid.com, Cashfiesta, and the like. These companies claimed they would pay you to surf the Internet while looking at ads. I created my first website on a service much like GeoCities and was able to generate over 50,000 referrals between all the programs I was enrolled in. One by one, I learned that all of the programs were a scam. I made $65 when I was entitled to over a million. …
Written by Chad Bean
Friday, August 21st, 2009
Inc. Magazine just ranked HostGator #239 overall on their prestigious Inc. 5000 list of the fastest growing privately owned companies in America. Here’s how the companies that make Inc’s list are ranked:
The Inc. 500|5000 is ranked according to percentage revenue growth from 2005 through 2008. To qualify, companies must have been founded and generating revenue by the first week of 2005, and therefore able to show four full calendar years of sales. Additionally, they have to be U.S.-based, privately held, for profit, and independent — not subsidiaries or divisions of other companies — as of December 31, 2008 (a number of companies on the list have gone public or been acquired since that date). Revenue in 2005 must have been at least $200,000, and revenue in 2008 must have been at least $2 million.
Additionally, HostGator ranked #6 in all Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown, TX (Greater Houston area) companies, and #20 out of all companies in our category—Business Products & Services.
HostGator has managed to grow over 896% within the measured 3 year time period. We’ve nearly doubled in revenue from 2007 to 2008.
In 2008, HostGator was ranked at #21 overall. Although 2009’s rank was lower than the previous year’s, we’ve nearly doubled our revenue between the two periods. Despite the job market shrinking across the U.S., HostGator has also created 100 positions for highly qualified technicians and systems’ administrators in the Houston area over the last year.
I think I speak for everyone at HostGator, when I say we’re all really proud to be a part of this company and what we’ve been able to accomplish. The growth simply comes from doing what we’ve always done: providing our clients with reliable web hosting service, 24/7 support, and by offering as many features as possible.
Huge thanks goes to our clients and employees for our continued success. …
Written by Brent Oxley
Monday, October 20th, 2008
We have some very exciting, disturbing, shocking, and electrifying news for you!
HostGator Web Hosting is now offering UNLIMITED DISK SPACE, UNLIMITED BANDWIDTH, and UNLIMITED DOMAINS for less than ten bucks a month.
I should be telling you this is a limited time offer and to sign-up while supplies last, but I’m not going to. If you decide to wait a few months, the plan just might change to unlimited bazillion-trillion everything. If you happen to sign up before the unlimited bazillion-trillion plans are released, we’ll be happy to upgrade you free of charge. If you think this all sounds ridiculous, that’s because it is! The “new” unlimited plan is the same plan we were offering a year ago, but now we label it as unlimited.
I wanted to call the plans unlimited last time around. However, due to staffing constraints, we wouldn’t have been able to keep up with the expected growth. A year later, we are finally OVERSTAFFED and ready to change the plan. Up until now, I’ve been slowing sales down on purpose in order for our support to catch up. If history repeats itself, renaming the plan from essentially unlimited to actually “unlimited” will increase our sales by at least 30%.
It’s really that simple.
We change an unlimited plan to say “unlimited” and bam — sales increase 30%, if not more. Many people will argue that “overselling” is evil and that it’s the cause of poor hosting service. This is not the case when it’s managed correctly and the proper staffing is in place. When a hosting company hops on the overselling bandwagon, their sales usually increase exponentially. Since very few companies actually have the capacity to handle a major surge in growth, their quality of service is almost guaranteed to deteriorate.
The support problems HostGator has had in the past weren’t from “overselling.” The problems were actually a result of growing faster than we could hire and train employees. …
Written by Douglas Hanna
Monday, September 29th, 2008
HostGator has a history and tradition of giving back. In the last year, we’ve donated over $125,000 to charity, actively worked towards offsetting and reversing our environmental impact, and given free or
discounted web hosting to a countless number of web sites.
Today, we’re moving forward with our commitment to the communities and the people we serve with the launch of the HostGator Technology Grant.
Recipients of the HostGator Technology Grant will receive one year of completely free web hosting with our Swamp Plan, which offers 1,000 GB of space and unlimited bandwidth. If the Swamp plan does not fit the needs of the particular recipient, they can opt to take the grant as a $180 service credit to any other HostGator product or service. After the one year of free service, grant recipients can re-apply and if accepted again, continue to use HostGator web hosting completely free.
The HostGator Technology Grant’s goal is simple and straightforward: provide free web hosting to organizations and projects that serve the greater good.
Obtaining legitimately free web hosting for nonprofits can be an arduous process. Organizations should be spending their time doing what they believe in and what they set out to do, not hunting for
affordable and quality web hosting. …