Shared hosting is a form of virtual hosting that requires its users to share the same server and often the same IP address. Despite the fact that the websites on a shared hosting server have separate domains and separate content, they are intrinsically linked by the server they share. While it is the most affordable hosting option and usually sufficient for small to medium websites, there are some issues you may face.
- Shared IP – Unless you have an e-commerce site and need a dedicated IP for SSL, you will share an IP address with other users. This is normally fine, but you should know that some of the things your neighbors do can affect your IP address. For example, if your neighbor gets put on a spam blacklist, anyone else who shares that IP will be on it to – including you.
- CPU and Memory – While you will have a guaranteed amount of disk space allocated to your account, you will share CPU power and RAM with your server neighbors. If one takes more than his or her fair share, it can adversely affect the other users.
- Hacking – In the unfortunate event that one of your neighbors has his site hacked, you had better hope the security breach is not serious enough to cause the whole server to be affected. In that case, your site could be in jeopardy.
Despite the above three issues, shared hosting has plenty of benefits, and if you have a security-conscious web host, they can prevent or at least more easily mitigate any security problems that arise due to the nature of shared hosting.