HostGator is a Houston-based provider of shared, reseller, virtual private server, and dedicated web hosting with an additional presence in Austin, Texas.
HostGator was founded in 2002 by Brent Oxley, who was then a student at Florida Atlantic University. By 2006, HostGator had passed the 200,000 mark in registered domains.
In 2007, the company moved from the original office in Boca Raton, Florida to a new 20,000 square building in Houston, Texas.
In 2008, Inc. Magazine ranked HostGator in its list of fastest growing companies at 21 in the United States and 1 in the Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown, Texas area The same year, HostGator decided to make their hosting service green hosting by working with Integrated Ecosystem Market Services. In 2008, HostGator prepared for competition companies touting themselves as providing "unlimited" hosting services. Founder Brent Oxley was adamant about being able to back up an "unlimited" option prior to offering service named as such and increased staffing. He suggested that this move increased sales by at least 30%.
In 2010 an office was added in Austin, Texas In 2011, HostGator started operations in India with a its office in Nashik, Maharashtra and a data centre.
On 21 June 2012, CEO and founder Brent Oxley announced the sale of HostGator to Endurance International Group, advised employees and users not to worry in part because Oxley would still own the buildings HostGator used. He said he wanted to travel the world before he had children. He was also candid about the failures in creating stable billing and registrar portions of HostGator, and hoped that Endurance might fix those. HostGator was sold to Enduarance International Group for $225 million USD.
As of 2013, HostGator hosts over 9 million domains.
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2012 social engineering attack
In May 2012, the computer hacker group UGNazi claimed responsibility for hacking the web server of the web host billing software developer WHMCS in an apparent social engineering attack involving HostGator. A member of the group Cosmo called WHMCS's hosting provider impersonating a senior employee. They were subsequently granted root access to WHMCS's web server after providing information for identity verification. UGNazi later leaked publicly WHMCS's SQL database containing user information and 500,000 customer credit cards, website files, and cPanel configuration. After this issue WHMCS emailed members to change their passwords.
2013 Service Outages
Since its acquisition by Endurance International, Hostgator has suffered an increased incidence of server outages and downtime. Notably, on August 2, 2013 and December 31st, 2013, Endurance International Group's data center in Provo, Utah, experienced network outages that affected thousands of customers of Bluehost, HostGator, HostMonster and JustHost.
Spring 2014 Blackouts
During the afternoon of April 16, 2014, the data center in Provo, Utah experienced a networking issue that affected customers of HostGator, HostMonster & Bluehost. The issue was fully rectified only after 24 hours on April 17, 2014 11.35 AM. There was another outage on May 19, 2014 that took nearly 9 hours to completely resolve. This problem occurred in the same data center.
October 2014 Outage
During the morning of October 29, 2014 Hostgator suffered another major outage that affected their reseller accounts. The company did not immediately announce the cause of the outage, though they stated, on Facebook and their forum, that an OS upgrade was the cause of the issue. (They made the reseller sections of their forum inaccessible to the public, visible only to registered users.) The server-level problems were resolved on November 2, 2014, almost five days after the outage began. On November 4, 2014, users were still reporting widespread account-level database problems.
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