What You Need to Know about Shared IP Addresses

shared ip address

If you’re serious about web hosting you’ve probably done some research on IP addresses, SEO, and other things pertaining to your website.

During this research it’s likely you’ve found conflicting information on how to maximize your website visibility and performance.

This is normal and expected when you’re dealing with anything online related. The magnitude of the Internet gives users many solutions to the same problem.

One question website owners often bring up is the viability of shared hosting. Is shared hosting safe? Will it effect my SEO? Why is it so much cheaper than a dedicated IP address?

All of those questions are important and easily answered with a little background knowledge on exactly how shared hosting works.

Let’s take a look at what you need to know about having a shared IP address.

Shared IP Address – The Basics

Let’s start with the absolute basics. An IP address is the real web address of a website or server.

Domain names like “apple.com” don’t actually tell your browser where to access information. Instead, IP addresses formatted like designate the correct server.

In shared hosting, your website is still assigned an IP address, but that address is also assigned to many other websites hosted on the same server.

This means that the actions of one bad seed can affect things like your SEO and inclusion on email blacklists.

However, because you’re giving up a dedicated IP, you monthly bills are much cheaper with shared hosting.

It forms something of a risk/reward scenario. Are you willing to take the plunge into shared security and reputation? Is the risk reward worth it?

These are all questions that require their own scenario based on your specific needs.


Emails sent from your website, “yourwebsitehere.com,” use your IP address to assign a location to your email.

It works sort of like a return mailing address. Your unique (or shared) IP lets incoming servers know where the message is coming from.

This can cause issues when sharing an IP with other users.

People sometimes abuse emails as marketing technique and send out what is commonly known as “spam.” As we’re sure you’re aware, everyone hates spam.

This includes email hosting companies such as Google. What Google does to avoid spam is blacklist (block) email from known spamming addresses (IPs).

Sometimes this inadvertently causes your emails to get caught in the blacklist. What’s worse, the blacklist is gmail wide; meaning no emails you send to any gmail address get through.

However, this doesn’t mean that all shared IP addresses are bad. Good shared hosts will monitor for email spam and terminate the contract of those responsible.

Website owners can also use a third party mail hosting provider to send email through a dedicated “email IP” address.

Your new dedicated IP is linked only to your reputation and thus isn’t in danger of blacklisting.


Many people worry about security issues when sharing an IP address. While these concerns are valid, they’re probably a little overblown.

Quality web hosts don’t have many security issues. Why? Because most of the Internet utilizes shared IP addresses.

If you’re worried about security, ask your potential host these things.

  • Are users isolated from other users on the server? That is, can anyone access my root files?
  • Is your web structure such that addresses aren’t open to manipulation to access other user’s files?
  • Do you regularly update, monitor, and fix your server when problems arise?
  • How are my usernames and passwords stored on the server?
  • Who’s allowed to access my database or change user permissions?

Any reputable web host will answer these questions without hesitation.

If they pass this little test, you’re no more secure with a dedicated IP address than with their shared IP.

The only people who need a dedicated IP for security purposes are large corporations with valuable data at stake.

If you fall into this category, you can’t take any risk if an unexpected security breach does occur.

It’s smarter to just pay for the dedicated IP address and mitigate any and all security risk that might arise.

Search Engine Optimization

The entire point of maintaining a website is to draw in visitors, views, clicks; whatever you’d like to call the people who view your pages.

You’re probably inclined to believe that SEO is extremely important to businesses large and small, and you’re correct.

Search engine optimization is an enormous market consisting of digital marketers who spend their days dissecting Google’s algorithms and creating relevant content.

Website owners need SEO marketers just as much as the SEO marketers need website owners.

You might wonder, what’s the have to do with my share IP address? Well, there’s a persistent myth that shared IP addresses negatively affect SEO.

We’re here to tell you that myth is entirely false. All other things notwithstanding, dedicated IP address do no more for your SEO than a shared IP.

However, there are some things available only to dedicated IP users that can help your SEO.

For instance, SSL certificates are used to provide security over e-commerce transactions. Google has publicly stated that SSL certificates do increase SEO.

Turns out, these certificates are only available to websites with a dedicated IP address.

Dedicated IP address also help websites load faster. Less server data means an easier time returning browser requests.

This might not seem significant because load times don’t vary too much, but Google also factors web page load speed as an SEO metric.

So while in a vacuum dedicated vs. shared hosting doesn’t affect your SEO, certain elements that go along with these options might.

Looking at all of the factors involved in a dedicated IP address versus a shared IP address, it becomes clear that shared hosting doesn’t have many drawbacks.

If you pick reputable hosting companies there’s no reason shared hosting will cause you any detriment, nor will dedicated hosting bring you any benefits (unless you’re running an e-commerce store).

Ultimately the choice is yours, but feel free to refer back to our recommendation if you can’t decide.

How DoS Protection Can Reduce Website Downtime

DoS and Website Downtime

What do you think is the biggest threat to your business right now?

Some business owners may be worried about their money. They may only trust themselves to handle payroll or bank deposits. A few would never let other employees touch the company card.

Other people may be worried about their own employees. They don’t just hire for culture or talent, they want someone they can trust.

If you’re worried about the safety and stability of your business, you should be looking online. DoS protection has become an essential part of cybersecurity for a lot of businesses. And after you learn about how disruptive DoS attacks can be you’ll understand why it’s a priority.

DoS Danger

When most people think of online security issues data breeches and stolen information usually comes to mind. Your data and other sensitive information are important, but there are more pressing matters at hand.

A denial of service (DoS) attack is exactly what it sounds like. Attackers render websites and other important online resources unavailable to its intended users.

A denial of service attack is relatively simple to execute, you may have even been a part of one without knowing it. It’s simple for hackers to send out emails, messages, or social media posts with embedded links that can overwhelm a server.

A simple DoS attack is troublesome enough, and a DDoS attack can be just as troublesome. When a DDoS attack occurs, a hacker uses your system to attack another computer.

Types of Dos attacks

If you want to have good DoS protection, you need to understand the different kinds of DoS attacks.

  • Volume attacks (connectionless attacks): Also known a “flood”. The main purpose of this DoS attack is to overwhelm the bandwidth of the site and cause congestion by sending as many “people” to it as possible. They’re commonly executed with botnets, computers infected with malicious software and code that’s controlled by the hacker
  • Application layer attacks: Also known as “7 layer attacks”. These attacks target weaknesses in servers and applications. They establish a connection and overwhelm it by taking over transactions and processes. They can be difficult to detect because they don’t require a lot of computers.
  • TCP state exhaustion attack: This kind of attack is unique and focuses on attacking firewalls, web servers, and load balancers. Their goal is to disrupt connections which will overload their finite number of concurrent connections the device can support.

As you can see, a DoS attack is much more complex than a website simply going down. If you’re new to the world of cyber security you may not see why a DoS attack can be so serious.

After you learn about businesses and brands were affected by DoS attacks, you’ll see why you should be concerned.

The hacks heard round the world

Where were you on December 31st, 2015? If you were like many people you were probably celebrating New Year’s Eve, but if you worked in IT for the BBC or Donald Trump you were working overtime.

A group called New World Hacking executed a devastating DoS attack that day. The BBC’s main website and their multimedia tool iPlayer were down for at least three hours.

Trump was only campaigning at the time, but his website was also hit and was inaccessible for hours.

An attack that can cripple one of the biggest media empires in the world and the website of the future President of the United States is no laughing matter.

The same group went on to perform another massive DoS attack. In October 2016 several popular websites like Twitter, GrubHub, and Spotify were crippled by a DoS attack by the same group.

Iconic multinational brands are still vulnerable to DoS attacks in 2017. These attacks cause problems for millions of people, and also embarrassed some brands.

Why you need DoS protection

As you can see, DoS attacks can affect businesses of all sizes and cause a variety of problems. The cost to businesses DoS attacks can cause can be devastating.

Once your website is affected by a DoS attack, you need to employ IT professionals to fix it. You miss out on online sales. You lose a connection to potential customers.

The average business owner simply doesn’t have the time or money to deal with the ramifications of a DoS attack. That’s why the best way to deal with DoS threats is to try to prevent them from happening.

Aside from having a plan to deal with downtime, you need to plan for DoS attacks.

Have a strong ISP

A lot of businesses find that it’s easiest to lean on their internet service providers (ISP) for their initial DoS protection. ISPs have far more bandwidth than a standard enterprise would.

That extra amount of bandwidth could make it difficult to target your site.

Don’t think blocking will fix it

Some amateur IT professionals will try to stop a DoS attack by simply banning offending IP addresses from accessing the targetted site or server.

This method will seem like it’ll work at first, but as the attack goes on it’ll become nearly impossible to keep up with the flood of visitors. The purpose of a DoS attack is to overwhelm servers and the people trying to fix them.

Eventually, you won’t be able to individually block them all.

Once it’s clear that an attack is occurring, your DoS protection resources would be better focused on finding solutions and not blocking individual IP addresses.

Watch out for secondary attacks

Sometimes a DoS attack is just a distraction from something bigger. While your IT team is scrambling to stop the source of the DoS issue, someone could be stealing data or other sensitive information.

It’s tempting to put all of your IT resources on fixing the DoS attack. But you should always have someone checking other things to ensure that there aren’t more problems.

Hackers are always looking for ways to disrupt businesses and websites. Are there other cyber security concerns you have? Let us know so we can help you protect your business.

How to Create a Website Downtime Strategy that Works

Downtime Strategy

We can’t control everything in our lives and that’s a fact. But, as business owners, we’d all like to be able to control when our company is available for customers.

Websites can go down for many different reasons, including planned maintenance or malicious attacks. It can be unavoidable at times– but no matter what, downtime can cost your business money until everything is back online.

So, what can you do? Develop a website downtime strategy to have on the backburner.

SiteUpTime is dedicated to helping businesses understand what goes on when their website goes down and how much time the business is actually functional online.

And with many businesses averaging $1,000 lost per minute of website downtime, having your website go offline throughout the month can really add up.

If you want to learn how to create a website downtime strategy that works to keep your business safe from downtime losses, be sure to keep reading!

Why downtime should be monitored

Downtime strategies are only important if you understand why downtime can be so hazardous to your business!

Here’s a quick breakdown of why this problem should be taken seriously.

Loss of business

This one is pretty clear: if your website isn’t working, customers can’t access it.

Studies have found that people are quick to leave a website if it doesn’t load fast enough. If your site isn’t working at all, potential customers are unlikely to come back and see if it’s working again at a later point.

Remember that time is money and even Amazon feels the blows of downtime– they lost 1.6 billion dollars in sales by being down for one second!

Make sure your service is working for you

If you are working with a company that is hosting your site, you will want to monitor your downtime to make sure that they’re actually working for you.

Meeting your ROI baseline is important and spending money on a network that is leaving you with nine hours of downtime a month doesn’t help.

You will want to know what’s going on so that you can make informed decisions on what direction to take your business and its online presence.

How to come up with a website downtime strategy that works

In the case that something does happen, you’ll want to be prepared and have a good downtime strategy to make the most of the time you have.

SiteUpTime can help you monitor your site to know when you’ll have to spring into action, so consider our competitive prices and contact us if you need more information!

Have valid data backups

When your website is offline, there’s no telling what caused it to go down.

It can be as simple as your service company being down for maintenance or as catastrophic as a complete wipe out of the entire network and data.

That’s why you’ll want to have up-to-date backups of all of your information. This means saving documents and client information and transaction information.

It’s recommended that companies back up their data at least once a week. The goal? You should be backing up your information once a day to prevent data loss or having to deal with piecing together information that’s a week outdated.

Once you do that, you’ll want to make sure your backups are working properly so that they can be accessed later.

It turns out that 48% of companies who have backed up their data experienced a secondary loss because the backup didn’t function properly.

Contact your IT support

If your website is down, make sure that contacting your IT support team is high on your downtime strategy list.

You will want to contact them to alert them that your website is down, if they don’t already know, and put together a plan of how to get it back online.

IT support teams can locate the reason for a website going down and find ways to re-route your network to bring everything back up.

But this won’t be a process that can happen in a few minutes. You’ll want to check in with them regularly until everything is back to normal, but don’t flood them or panic in the meantime.

Review your web monitoring logs

As a part of your downtime strategy, you should be reviewing your web monitoring logs to see if your site being down is part of a larger trend.

Your web monitoring logs could also let you know if your website is more likely to go down from one server than another, depending on the level of detail you get.

Gathering information such as when your website went down can be useful for your IT support team as well. Knowing how long a site has been down can give them an idea of how large the problem is or could be.

So make sure you get to look through this information as soon as possible!

Notify your users

Here’s a major step that’s often overlooked in downtime strategies.

You have to notify your users that your website is down.

Some people may think not acknowledging the site is down is the best plan of action, since maybe some customers won’t notice.

But facing the issue head-on is one way to ensure that customers who did notice are aware of what’s going on.

You may want to send out a tweet or mass-email to your clients letting them know that the problem is being worked on. From there, you can send out updates and a notification once your site is back up.

The benefit? You’ll have customers feeling valued that they’re kept in the loop. And you could avoid a flood of customer service calls full of people demanding to now why they can’t access their account!

Want more information?

If you want to learn more about how having a website downtime strategy can help you, don’t hesitate to reach out to us or check out our other blog posts.

SiteUpTime provides services that check your website from multiple points in the world to make sure people from anywhere can work with your company.

Slow WordPress Site? Here’s How to Speed Things Up

Slow Wordpress Site?

People are all about their self-expression, and that’s why we seek website hosts that let us customize them to our heart’s content.

There really are WordPress plugins for everything these days, meaning you can represent your services in many great ways. That’s why keeps customers coming back and what makes WordPress so popular.

But what happens if you notice you have a slow WordPress site on your hands?

SiteUpTime specializes in monitoring how well websites are working all the time and how stable their connection is.

We know that many people are used to websites loading extremely fast these days. The internet’s technology has improved so much that we can have expectations like that.

But when a website loads slowly, people are likely to click out after just 40 seconds– and that’s being generous. Most leave after just a few seconds of waiting for a site to load.

So if you are dealing with a slow WordPress site, you’ll want to take action fast if you want to preserve your user base!

How to handle your slow WordPress site

If you use the internet pretty frequently, chances are you’ve come across another WordPress site while you’ve browsed!

It turns out that 22% of new domains are linked to WordPress accounts, making it a force to be reckoned with in the digital world.

WordPress can also boast hosting 14% of the world’s most successful sites.

The point? We know that WordPress can host businesses successfully and let you enjoy your custom website without too much legwork.

So here’s what you can do if you notice your slow WordPress site isn’t pulling its weight.

Remove unnecessary plugins

One of the greatest things about WordPress is that it has so many plugins. There are over 47 thousand if you want to get technical.

But they could also be one cause to your website being slow.

Making use of plugins should be something that you do. After all, they’re there to support you but make sure that you aren’t using too many of them at once.

When someone visits your website, their network will have to download everything on that page instantaneously. This means that the more minimalized your site is as far as plugins go, the faster it will load.

So if your website is loading slowly, you’ll want to ask yourself these questions:

  • Have I added a new plugin lately?

If you have, experiment by removing it and seeing if it was the direct cause of your slow WordPress site. This is a quick way of troubleshooting and saving yourself some time.

  • Are there any plugins that I can do without?

Many people use more than one plugin on their site, but you may want to take some time to reflect on each one.

Does each plugin you’re using add to the quality and usage of your website? Do people come to your website and make great use of what you’ve added? If not, you’ll want to remove these plugins.

Trimming down excess plugins can clear up your site and allow it to load at faster speeds once all the bulk is gone!

Reduce image sizes

If your WordPress site has many photos on it, you may want to take a second look at the way you’ve set everything up.

Similarly to plugins, having a bunch of photos on your website could slow loading down.

Do you remember the times of dialup? And how we had to wait for an image to load by watching it come up (usually blurry) piece by piece?

Your WordPress site may not get slow enough to take us back all those years, but loading photos does take a lot of time and power.

Help your site work faster by reducing image sizes when you can or creating a separate page for your images by linking to a gallery with a simple “Click to see more” button.

That way you won’t lose your photos and you can speed up your slow WordPress site all at once.

Enable caching

This may be a slightly more technical tip to speed up a slow WordPress site, but it really works.

To help your load times, you will want to enable caching.

Essentially, caching saves your website as a series of files that are much easier for a user’s network to download. In the future, when that same person opens your website again, the “files” will already be saved and easy to open.

WordPress offers a few options to help you cache and optimize your website, as well as some great instructions to help you through the process.

Take steps to help out your homepage

It seems like minimalism is a trend that isn’t going away anytime soon.

Dozens of books and articles have been published about how we should declutter our home and make our lives better. The same goes for our websites and that’s a good thing if you want to speed things up.

If you have a blog, you can speed up your site by only showing small excerpts and linking to the rest of the post with a cut. That way your users can still view everything, just like that photo gallery, without having to load everything all at once.

This can also make your site look more streamlined and approachable once people aren’t greeted with a huge wall of text right off the bat.

You can also remove extra widgets from your landing page by asking yourself if that “visit count” widget is really doing much for you.

Remember, the goal of “minimalism” with your website is to only keep what’s working for you.

Trim down the excess and enjoy faster loading times as a result.

Want to know more?

If you want to learn about other topics that can really help you boost the way your company is online, take a look at the rest of our blog posts!

Our job is may seem simple but it’s essential and that’s why over 125,000 companies choose to work with us!

And if you have any questions, we are always here to help you! Contact us anytime and we’ll get to work changing the amount of time your site spends earning you money online.

Why System Downtime and Slow Speeds Affect SEO

System Downtime

The world today is experiencing an increased demand for immediate gratification. People expect instant access to information, and the reasons aren’t hard to pinpoint.

Ever-increasing Internet speeds are allowing people access to information at an unprecedented rate. In a three year gap between 2011 and 2014, Internet speeds increased by 10Mbps.

To put that in perspective, in 2000 a mere 200kbps met the FCC’s definition of advanced Internet services.

Couple this with the 207 million smartphone users in the US, and it makes sense that attention spans are decreasing.

A study by Microsoft Corp. helps bring to light just how short our attention spans have become. People generally can’t focus for more than eight seconds. That’s a one-second shorter attention span than a goldfish.

This impatience also effects website load times. After all, what’s the point of fast internet access if web pages load slow?

An astounding 47 percent of users expect a web page to load in two seconds or less, and that number will surely rise.

Google long ago took note of this trend and incorporated site speed and system downtime into their algorithm.

Keeping pace in modern SEO means keeping pace with shortening attention spans and user demands for speed.

System Downtime

System downtime is never positive. Yes, site maintenance and other small issues force websites down occasionally, but Google remembers even the smallest amount of system downtime.

Understanding why Google punishes websites for their downtime is the key to minimizing its impact on SEO. We’re broken down Google’s rational into three main categories.

Google Loves Crawling

Google indexes your website with its “spider” tool that “crawls” your web pages. Put another way, Google checks your website for new content and backend updates.

When a website greets Google with an error code, for instance, a 500 internal error or 503 response, the website interprets your system downtime and adjusts your SEO rank accordingly.

In general, the longer your site throws an error code, the more Google will penalize your ranking. However, some error codes hurt more than others.

A Moz study found that the 500 internal server errors occurring intermittently caused keywords to drop out of both the top ten and top 20 rankings. The pages in question also received less “crawls” per day. Fewer crawls mean fewer opportunities for Google to record SEO signals and therefore worse SEO potential.

The 500 internal error was also found to wreak havoc during consistent downtimes. Domains dropped anywhere from 5 to 100 positions for tracked keywords.

The User Knows Best

Google is increasingly focused on providing users with the best experience possible. This has continued with the recent release of Penguin 4.0.

Google interprets that your website isn’t user-friendly if you’re dropping keywords and other backend metrics. Inconvenient website’s earn lower rankings.

Former Google employee, Matt Cutts, elaborated on the impact downtime has on user experience during a Google Q&A session.

Cutts said, “If your host is down for two weeks…there’s a better indicator that your website is actually down, and we don’t want to send users to a website that’s actually down.”

Keeping your website active is crucial to providing a positive user experience and winning Google’s favor.

If your website must go down, make sure to issue a 503 error. The error code tells the Googlebot and users that the downtime is temporary. Warning Google allows them to hold off on reducing your search rank.

Site Speed

Site speed is an almost entirely user-based metric. While Google factors things like keywords and links into relevance and other SEO signals, site speed is only factored into the end user experience.

We’ve already touched on how impatient users are, but that impatience that is critical to understanding site speed. In fact, the site speed metric exists because of user impatience.

The term site speed refers to how quickly a web page loads. Several metrics measure actual loading time:

  • Document complete time measures how fast a web page becomes interactive.
  • Fully rendered refers to when your web page is fully loaded with advertisements and all background elements.
  • Time to First Byte refers to how long your browser takes to receive the first byte of a response from a web server after requesting a URL
  • Page Size is the total amount of bytes that make up your page vs. how long the page takes to fully render

How to Optimize Your Speed

The goal of increasing site speed is tailoring your website to capitalize on each metric. For instance, the page size is an easy metric to optimize for. Decreasing your overall page size will usually decrease your time to full render.

Other metrics are harder to capitalize on. All load time metrics can benefit from a better host, but better hosting costs money. Likewise, optimal HTML structure and web compression are hard to implement for the average user, but both guarantee increased site speed.

Other, easier, methods for increasing site speed are avoiding flash and reducing your image sizes. It’s important to optimize for every metric possible when seconds matter.

Wrapping It All Up

Site speed and system downtime are two important metrics that Google uses to determine SEO rank. Each has an effect at the algorithm level, but it’s important to remember that Google’s focus is ultimately on end user experience.

Anything about your website that hinders user experience is likely to hurt your SEO.

Ask yourself this: are there any elements to your website that you dislike or that make use difficult? Does your website load slowly, is it always going offline?

If your answer is yes Google has already penalized your search ranking. Our product makes sure that website downtime no longer affects your search rank.

We understand that time is of the essence, and provide users with real-time website monitoring and instant alerts to any errors or issues. We also offer a custom API for deep integration into website diagnostic data.

Our companies goal is to keep your customers engaged by keeping your website online.

If you have any further questions about our product, please contact us here. We’re always eager to help new customers.

Top 5 IT Admin Errors that Lead to Network Downtime

downtimeCreating and maintaining a website is crucial for businesses today. And if you don’t want your customers to switch to one of your competitors, you better make sure your online presence is conveniently accessible.

But today it’s no longer enough to just have a website. You must be prepared to manage things like downtime.

Why Downtime Management Is So Important

Downtime refers to periods of time when a system, such as a network, becomes unavailable. This hiccup can have detrimental effects for your business. And it happens probably more than you think.

Businesses deal with unplanned downtime an average of 13 times per year. The average cost of just one hour of downtime for a highly critical application? More than $82K.

But network downtime costs affect more than real dollar amounts. It can also negatively affect a company’s reputation, SEO and SERPs, loss of data, and the customer experience.

All of these, of course, are bad news for a business’s bottom line.

Consider the fact that 81% of shoppers conduct online research before making a purchase. Now, imagine someone was trying to either conduct further research on one of your products or was going back to your site to make a purchase.

If your site was down and refused to load because of an internal issue, chances are that person would do a Google search for the same type of product and look elsewhere.

After all, convenience and timeliness have everything to do with the customer experience and how customers—both new and existing ones—perceive your brand.

Research shows that companies that prioritize the customer experience earn 60% more profits than their competitors.

In August 2013, the New York Times’ site went down—but only for two hours. Still, one of its top competitors, the Wall Street Journal, took advantage. The Journal temporarily dropped its paywall in an effort to convert Times’ readers.

Additionally, the Times’ stock dropped.

Downtime can happen due to a number of reasons, some of which are within your control.

In fact, human error is the cause of as much as 75% of downtime.

Below, we discuss the top five preventable IT admin errors that can lead to network downtime.

Top 5 IT Admin Errors

1. Failure to backup systems.

This may sound like an amateur move for IT professionals, but it does happen.

In order to salvage intel if a system goes down, a clear backup plan is needed.

Make sure your backup is fully functioning the way it should be for whatever type of infrastructure you have.

Double check that all intended storage devices are included in the backup, and be aware that the backup you’re using is the most current.

Another error that some companies face is cutting corners by not investing in the most current updates or security measures.

These investments will actually benefit you in the long run.

2. Not getting everyone on board with policies and procedures.

Training is a crucial aspect of almost any job, but especially in a position where instrumental data is involved.

In this case, it’s important to make sure there are policies and plans in place for staff to follow consistently.

You want to make sure your IT team is following these procedures across the board. Aside from regular check-ups, make sure there are policies in place—what to do and when to execute on them—when things do go wrong.

This protocol should include a comprehensive checklist and regular testing procedures. Testing is non-negotiable but it’s important to also remember to test partial parts of a whole system.

Partial failures can occur in both the network hardware as well as in electrical switchgear.

What are your recovery options? Do you know how much storage your system can handle? Are you keeping up with updates necessary to speed up any slowdowns? Is your backup equipped with the most current information? And are you documenting the details of each issue?

Is your backup equipped with the most current information? And are you documenting the details of each issue?

These are questions your team should always be asking themselves and know how to answer.

Having post-procedures in place when things slow down or go down is key. It prevents more chaos around an already stressful situation when time is of the essence. It also minimizes downtime.

3. Taking security lightly.

Another cause of downtime is through intentional human error in the form of a cyber attack.

Cyber attacks occur when stored information systems are not fully secure. And they’re quite common.

The number of reported data breaches last year was 781. This number has increased 23% since 2013.

Cyber attacks do more than threaten the loyalty of your customer base and the reputation of your company. It also costs a lot of money in recovery.

The average total cost of a data breach in the U.S. is $6.5 million. And the global cost of cyber attacks in 2019 is projected to be $2.1 trillion.

Make sure your security systems are tight, consistently tested, and updated when necessary.

4. Not investing in redundant parts.

When purchasing parts of a system, such as CPUs, fans, and power supplies, an IT manager may initially choose the cheaper option to save the department money. Cheaper options usually include one set of parts to a system.

However, if downtime should occur, getting those redundant parts for backup errors will cost you time and money. And that’s something you’ll want to avoid for the sake of the company’s reputation as well as your own.

Preparing for an outage means investing in the protection of the parts needed for the system to run, even if that means it’ll cost you more to begin with.

Consider which elements should be redundant—from batteries to Internet providers, and everything in between.

5. Not investing in a real-time service.

It’s nearly impossible and unrealistic to manually check your website every few minutes.

As a business owner, you’ve got a million and one things on your to-do list. Your staff is busy with their respective tasks.

Even your IT team, the people in charge of making sure your systems are secure, has a lot of other responsibilities to manage.

It’s also important to note that your employees aren’t working 24 hours like your website is.

Investing in a service that notifies you in real-time if your site goes down is a big piece of the puzzle to minimize the duration of downtime.

Have questions about how this type of service could help your business, or just want more information? We’ve got you covered here.

Secure Web Hosting for Your Business: What to Watch For

secure web hosting Security. Sounds like a powerful word, doesn’t it?

Truth is, it is powerful.

Think about the difference between the term “web hosting” and the term “secure web hosting.” Sounds like you would consider choosing the second one, right?

Over the years, online security has become vital. Registering a domain name, designing a killer website and being online is no longer enough.

After all, when you create a website, it’s like you put all your information on a cyberspace where hackers can enter and grab all the information they might need. The first thing you want to do is look for a host which provides you with the security needed.

Before we start, let’s take a look at the types of people who might want to break your website’s security protocol:

Identity Thieves

These hackers have one simple goal: Gather essential information about their victims and use them for personal gain.

Either it is your e-mails or your clients’ information, these hackers will definitely benefit from you and move on to their next victim because that’s what they do.

Actual Thieves

Do you know how much money moves via wireless signals, optic fibers, or even cell phones? Literally billions. We hate to be the bearers of bad news, but there are people who have the knowledge and the resources to steal parts of these billions.

If you own or run an e-shop, secure web hosting is absolutely essential. Look for web hosts featuring SSL certificate, and secure all the data transmitted to and from your website.

The Tricksters

To be honest, they are the worst. They just hack a website, take it down or even destroy it just for fun. However, even though it is a hobby for them, their work can definitely cause a number of problems to you and your business (loss of revenue, your clients will lose their trust in you etc.)

Are you are an individual trying to secure their essential information or a company monitoring a bunch of websites? The list below will definitely help you with your web server’s security:

Secure Web Hosting Basic Tools

Before you go deeper into the world of secure web hosting, there are three basic tools you have to learn how to use. All three of them will add a basic layer of security to your website and they will help you avoid all the drama hacking comes with:

Anti-Virus Software

Think of the internet as a hospital where 50 percent of the people are affected by a virus and the other 50 percent are visiting. The point is that anything that is online is vulnerable to viruses and your website is not an exception.

Find an open-source cPanel or Plesk anti-virus software and scan all of your directories for suspicious files that could destroy your online presence in a snap. Two of the most popular ones are ClamAV are avast!

Rootkit Scanner

Think of rootkits as small spiders that sneak into your web server. These spiders are so tiny that your anti-virus is not always able to detect them, so you need a rootkit scanner to get rid of them.


Sure, it sounds like a really fancy term. You have certainly watched movies about hackers trying to break a company’s firewall and get into the server to steal valuable data. However, the truth is that not all firewalls are equally strong.

Use a basic, free firewall to protect your server and block unauthorized access. It might not be as strong as CIA’s firewall, but it will get some job done.

Whatever you do, when looking for a host you have to make sure they offer you all these three basic applications to optimize and improve your server’s protection. Since they are not so sophisticated or that hard to find, they will most likely be free of charge.

FTP Settings

FTP stands for File Transfer Protocol. A useful protocol for every time you want to upload new files on your server. Generally speaking, FTP is a secure protocol, but this doesn’t mean that hackers are not able to attack it by modifying your uploaded files.

Talk with your web host provider and ask about SFTP availability. Yes, you guessed it right, that “S” stand for “secure”. This tiny little layer of protection will not be all you are going to need but it will be just another way to help you rest better at night.

After all, secure web hosting involves a number of steps.

Extra FTP tip: We are sure you already have, but we have to mention it. Uncheck that option which says “Allow Anonymous Uploads” and “Allow Anonymous Logins”. This will help you block strangers from uploading files to your web server. You’re welcome!

Updating Your Control Panel

Whatever your web hosting control panel is (Plesk or cPanel) make sure you always update it to the latest version. You see, the latest versions usually fix all the security bugs the previous ones had –and, trust us, you want that fix.

Talk with your host and ask them about your control panel’s updates. Do they automatically do it for you? How does your server’s updating process affect your website? Yes, all you have to do is ask.

Backup Like There is No Tomorrow

You already know how important backups are but, for some reason, we always feel the need to remind it. Because no matter how important backups are, people always tend to forget about them. If you are one of them, have one of your employees do it for you.

Even after you have done your best to protect your website from annoying intruders, unexpected things can always happen when you are at least prepared for them. There is only one solution to this –more common than you think— problem. BACKUPS.

No matter what attack or unlucky incident you may be dealing with, a backup will never disappoint you. It will always be there for you and help you get your website up and running at no time. Eat that, hackers!

Most hosts come with tools to help you manage your backups, but what about theirs? Ask them how often they backup their servers, what procedures they prefer, and where they store the data collected. After all, you have the right to know!

Monitoring your website 24/7 might sound hard and the truth is that it really is. Being on the constant lookout for cyber-attacks; trying to figure out what has gone wrong; searching for that part of your server that needs extra attention. It is a hard word.

If all of the above, sound intimidating, feel free to sign up today and get your own, personalized website report! We’ll be happy to help!

The Dyn DDoS Attack that Broke the Internet: Here’s What Happened

Dyn DDos AttackEven internet giants can’t consider themselves infallible in 2016. This is especially true after the most recent DDOS attack that took down websites like Twitter, Reddit, and Netflix.

Understanding DDOS attacks is helpful to knowing why your favorite websites are down. It’s also helpful when putting plans in place to protect your own website.

SiteUptime provides network performance monitoring services that make sure that your website is accessible from many points of the internet.

You’ll love our affordable service plans. SiteUpTime helps protect your website from hackers looking to steal information or bring your website down with a DDOS attack.

These attacks may seem random and unpredictable at times. There seems to be little anyone can do to prevent the internet from “breaking” during the time when these hackers wreck their havoc.

What a DDOS attack is

“DDOS” stands for Distributed Denial of Service. These attacks happen when a number of hackers and their bots go to a site all at once. This rush overwhelms the servers and causes the service to fail.

During this downtime, there isn’t much web hosts, web developers, and individual users can do to bring the website back to working order. This is evident in the latest DDOS attack on Dyn, a widely used internet performance manager.

These attacks, sometimes coming from the “darknet” can cost just $150 for a week-long DDOS attack. This makes the chances of a DDOS occurring higher since these cheap prices are in the budget for most people with malicious intent.

Interestingly enough, these attacks do not typically occur as an attempt to steal data from websites. But, in some attacks, this information can become compromised.

Instead, DDoS attacks block others from accessing the site and the information they have on it. Favorite videos on Youtube, sending out orders on Etsy or viewing your personal bank account information can all be stopped with an attack.

Ensuring that your website is secure is a first step in ensuring that a DDOS attack doesn’t harm your business.

There are ways to take steps that can help you avoid or prevent a DDoS attack. Try giving your employees additional training in online security and creating detailed online policies and strategies.


Botnets are a network of computers that have been infected by malicious viruses that remain hidden on the computer until an event like a DDOS attack occurs.

During this time, the “botmaster” is able to coordinate an attack and collect control of infected computers. Just one botnet could bring down a website.

However, these botnets may work collectively to target larger websites and networks in order to bring down the sites for a longer period of time and over a larger geographical area.

In the case of the Dyn DDoS attack, a collective of hackers and botnets worked together across the globe.

Since they were located in different areas, the botnets completely took out Dyn databases on the east coast of the United States.

This was accomplished by them targeting the Dyn servers that linked back to the East Cost but were located in other countries.

The Dyn DDoS attack

On October 21st, 2016, your access to many favorite websites may have suddenly stopped working.

Some of the websites that were taken offline caused massive problems. Twitter, Reddit, GitHub, Etsy, Imgur, PayPal, Spotify, Yelp, and the PlayStation Network reported problems stemming from the Dyn DDos attack.

Problematically, this attack stopped users from accessing their information and cost these companies hours of business. For internet-based companies, this can be devasting.

SiteUptime aids in internet performance monitoring to find out exactly how much downtime your web site endures.

This information, along with the other data our services gather, can help with your personal understanding of DDos attacks in relation to your business.

As some have noted, DDoS attacks typically target a single website. Usually, this happens when someone or some group has a personal reason to remove that company from full online functionality for an uncertain amount of time.

In the case of the Dyn attack, the unprecedented incident took out a host that allowed multiple large websites to function.

Surprisingly, for this DDoS attack, Network World reported that only 10% of the world’s botnets were involved in the Dyn DDoS attack.

This particular DDoS attack took out websites for the east coast for almost the entire day– beginning at internet “primetime” in the morning and a third wave of the attack occurring just after 4pm est.

What’s happening now

As for Dyn, all of the websites taken down by the October 21st attack have returned to full function. Users can once again enjoy their services and business owners can go back to providing goods and making their living.

However, this massive attack has called for a review of the way websites and servers currently run.

Improving the technology and coding behind websites like Dyn may be able to prevent a future attack, but staying one step ahead of massive networks of hackers is a difficult task.

The remedy to this problem is not very clearly, unfortunately. As with many things coming from the dark side of the internet, finding out motives and solutions will be difficult.

Dyn has produced a piece that outlines the impact, timeline, and possible solutions to remove the possibility of DDoS attacks from happening in the future.

While SiteUptime is absolutely on board with fighting for a solution, it is our biggest priority to keep you up-to-date with the correct information.

We help your business by monitoring the internet performance of your website to provide great service to your customers.


The DDoS attack on Dyn is a good example of why internet security is an important topic that should be at the forefront of any business owner’s mind. Security is important regardless of whether or not the company is small or large.

SiteUptime provides monitoring locations across the globe to test the functionality of your website from different points on the map.

With multiple locations, SiteUptime checks that problems like DDoS attacks don’t take down your website to different user groups.

Our locations are currently New York City, San Fransisco, Portland, Brazil, Ireland, Australia, and Singapore. Being across the globe is just another step we take to ensure that your website is monitoring and prepared for problems like DDoS attacks.

Network Performance Monitoring: 4 Reasons Your Site Goes Down

If you have a business, chances are you also have a website that brings in new customers from the web.

Providing network performance monitoring to over 125,000 websites, SiteUptime understands the necessity of having a funetwork performance monitoringnctional website that is reaching customers in order to keep businesses successful.

We know that a site that is up 99% of the time still equates to 7 hours out of every month where customers simply cannot reach your business website. For a new customer, this downtime is disastrous.

SiteUptime provides network performance monitoring services that make sure that your website is accessible throughout time and from multiple points of the internet. With our affordable service plans, you can be assured that your website stays available for your customers.

To best protect your business from the problems associated with websites going down, here are our top 4 reasons for site crashes.

What can network performance monitoring do for you?

Network performance monitoring can best be defined as the process of testing your website from multiple access points and time to check accessibility and the way your site is able to perform under various circumstances

SiteUptime has monitoring locations across the globe to test the network performance of your website from a comprehensive standpoint. Whether you are a web design or hosting company, or an individual website owner, network performance monitoring can help bring in a customer base you may have previously been missing.

With SiteUptime, your website will be monitored from varied geographical locations like New York City, San Fransisco, Portland, Brazil, Ireland, Australia, and Singapore. The scheduled testing that occurs from each of these locations will test the functionality of your website and verify any errors that occur.

Unfortunately, without a network performance monitoring system, it is difficult for website owners to effectively track what is going on.

The data you could be missing without network performance monitoring.

Network performance monitoring not only assists business owners in maintaining their e-consumer base through the knowledge of when their site is down, but it also offers an important mass of data that may otherwise be missed.

Shopping Cart Functionality

As a business that allows for online shopping, knowing if your customers are able to use their shopping carts and purchase their selections without error is integral to ensuring that customers can buy your products.


As mentioned earlier, a website that is up 99% of the time is still down seven hours out of the month.

Studies have shown that 78% of customers have left without a sale or purchase due to bad service on a website, so knowing the amount of time that your site is properly working is key to understanding what you’re missing out on.

Website Visitors

Knowing how many people visit your website can also help business owners understand what functionalities can best provide service to their customers.

Similarly, business owners are able to tailor their specific web packages to match the hits they are getting.

Broken Links

Remember that blog you posted in 2012? The internet does, though you may not. That specific blog can still be getting hits in 2016 and onwards if your SEO is still hitting the right marks.

It’s not reasonable for you to have an eye on every single link you’ve ever used to ensure that it is still working, but a network performance monitoring system is able to do so for you.

Page Speed

Knowing how quickly your page loads can help you understand whether or not customers are likely to stick around until your website is fully accessible to them. As we all remember the days of dial-up, slow web access is not something to be desired.

Network performance monitoring enables you to understand why your website is slow and what you can do about it to increase the success of your website and, as a result, your business.

The top 4 reasons your website is down

Server Overload

Once of the top reasons that websites go down is because of a server overload.

This is sometimes seen as a “good problem” to be having, as it means that too many people are trying to access your website at the same time. Though there is room for celebration (you are getting tons of new customers after all), you must ask yourself why you aren’t able to serve all of those customers.

Another common cause of server overloads is because your website is under attack by a hacker or group of hackers. These overloads, called DOS (Denial Of Service), occur when a hacker uses multiple computers that are often infected with viruses to view your website at the same time, causing your website to go down as a result of the overwhelming demand and traffic.


In relation to DOS attacks, hackers can cause your website to go down for a multitude of reasons. When your web security is compromised through accidental leaks of information, hackers can take down your website to retrieve your data and create harmful waves felt throughout your business.

Client database information, bank access, and other key components to your business may become compromised without the proper network safety being practiced.

Coding Errors

Another common reason for sites to go down is an error in coding. Though your developers should be working to prevent problems happening within the coding of your websites, errors can and will occur.

When a circumstance is not properly tested and prepared for, it is possible for the “perfect storm” to come together and cause your site to go down if all the right conditions are met that you coding is not ready to handle.

Datacenter Problems

As most websites use data centers to store their information and run their site on the backend, it is not uncommon for these centers to experience errors and downtime of their own. If a natural disaster occurs in the area of your center, this is an unavoidable reason for your website to go down.

In these cases, clear communication is needed to work with the center to get things up and running again.

We’re here to help.

SiteUptime is here to provide you with unbeatable network performance monitoring services for competitive prices.

We are also here to support our customers with educational information that can help with the way you understand how to protect your information online and how to better your website all through our blog content. Our comprehensive FAQ page also holds tons of valuable information for you.

To get started with network performance monitoring on your site, contact us!

Site Monitoring Tools: 4 Big Reasons You Need Them

Branding seems to be the hot new buzzword these days. People talk of crafting and protecting brands, of their customers making a connection with their brand, not just their company.

site monitoring toolsIt’s more than just your product or your information; branding encompasses the look, feel, and experience of a company or person.

Small businesses often have a more intimate relationship with their customers; in these cases, branding is a very big deal!

Your website is a direct 24/7 portal between your customers and audience to you and your brand.

But what happens if there’s an issue with your site and it goes down or pages won’t load? Is your website secure? And, how does it affect your Google rankings?

A website without site monitoring tools makes itself vulnerable to a host of issues that can quickly grow beyond your control.

If you think you can handle it on your own, read on to find out the four biggest issues that threaten you and your brand and what you can do now to protect it.

Time On Your Hands

Time is money – that old adage is truer than ever these days.

If your site has any issues, and it goes down, how quickly do you think you would be made aware of it? How much effort do you think it would take to really get to the root of the problem?

If you’ve got a small company or just run the website yourself, you might be caught unaware by a small problem that grew large while you weren’t looking.

At this point, you’re losing precious time dealing with it.

A site monitoring service nips this issue in the bud. You won’t have to be combing through logs for information or manually compiling data.Your website is a direct 24/7 portal between your customers and audience to you and your brand.

But what happens if there’s an issue with your site and it goes down or pages won’t load? Is your website secure? And how does it affect your Google rankings?

A website without site monitoring tools makes itself vulnerable to a host of issues that can quickly grow beyond your control.

These tools compile your IT info into one place for easy access, improving efficiency in real time.

With your site being monitored twenty-four hours a day, you can spend your valuable time crafting your posts or filling orders instead of keeping one eye open for problems.

Get Notified Before Your Site Suffers

Not only will your IT data be easily accessible in one central location, you will receive proactive notifications when something goes wrong.

Things that would usually go unnoticed are immediately brought to your attention, allowing you to take the steps needed to right your site.

Your website will suffer if your disc space fills up, causing the whole operation to lag or even fail.

If your anti-virus protection is out of date, it could cause a huge issue not only for your customers but for your own computer as well.

Twenty-seven percent of blogs or websites are run on WordPress. If yours is one of them you should know themes need to be updated often to prevent any kind of security risk.

Site monitoring tools are a proactive way to take control of your site and ultimately, the user experience.

The sooner you know there’s an issue, the quicker you can react.

Gain Insight And Understand How To Improve

You might think your website is perfect the way it is.

Of course, that’s how one feels after pouring their time and energy into creating something, especially something as personal as a brand website.

But, is it really all that great?

What if your hi-res images create a long loading time? Or those animations that you thought were eye-catching were actually ignored and just ate up space?

Is your load speed dragging and effectively killing your Google search results?

Yes – your website’s overall health and quality might be affecting your standings in Google rankings. If Google crawls your site and sees it’s down, you drop lower on the list.

Monitoring your site’s performance can really make that much of a difference which is why it’s always good to get another opinion.

With site monitoring tools, you’ll get a look into what works and what doesn’t on your website. Once you can see the bigger picture, you can start making decisions that will improve the overall health of your site.

Getting to know your site, you’ll see if your site isn’t responding the way you want it to, and from there you can get it where you need it to be.

The Worst Crime: Going Offline

What’s worse than having a site that loads slowly? A site that doesn’t load at all.

Going offline is incredibly costly, and not just from a financial perspective.

Imagine how you would feel about a site that suddenly wasn’t available.

Would you trust it with your credit card information? Would you feel that the info in the blog was legitimate?

The damage to your reputation is one of the biggest issues of site downtime.

You’ll lose money, true, but you’ll lose your customers’ trust and that’s almost impossible to get back.

Slow load time, being hijacked by malicious code, and a total site shut down – this is a business’ biggest nightmare.

Up to 40% of visitors to your page will click away from your site if it loads too slowly. Can you take that kind of hit?

All of the above points combine to make sure this never happens to you and your site.

Understanding your site, early detection of any issues, and saving time in dealing with these issues are the ultimate way to preserve your standings and improve user experience.

Site Monitoring Tools Are Vital For Your Website’s Health And Performance

Killing your user experience.

Wiping your website’s views on Google.

Losing customers and money.

Spending time on minor issues that spiraled out of control.

Leaving your site vulnerable to hackers and viruses.

Do you need more reasons to protect your brand?

Keep your peace of mind with a reliable and affordable service like SiteUptime.

SiteUptime has several plans – one of them at zero cost! – that will make sure your site never suffers any of the above pitfalls.

They’re available 24/7 in various locations around the world, ensuring there’s always someone watching out for you.

Their remote locations always verify their findings too so that you’re never sent into panic mode over a false reading.

Try it out and get a look into your website’s performance. A simple tweak might be all it takes to keep your customers happy and ultimately boost your bottom line.