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I have multiple web application installed in separeted directories in a shared hosting account. My worry is if one application get hacked, attacker can use it to attack other applications too.

So, My question is what are the potential ways in which an attacker can exploit a application on a shared account using a different application. Also, How can I prevent such attacks?

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In your scenario you cannot prevent an attacker from compromising the other applications on the account if the attack in question gains administrative control of the system. Once an attacker gets root then that's it, they can access everything. Your options for dealing with this threat are:

  • Prevention: try to keep an attack from being successful. This means keeping your system up to date and hardening the applications. If you are using a hosting account you may be at the mercy of the provider on this one. Of course you should be doing this anyway....
  • Use different accounts: You could get different accounts for the applications, or you could virtualize the applications using one account, using different credentials for each virtual system. If one of the virtualized apps gets compromised the spread will be contained
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  • Hi, As I have stated in question, I am talking about simple cPanel/FTP based sharing hosting. I have no administrative privileges, system level access. These are just on seperated directories on the same account. I want to know how can I prevent use of one application to attack another. And sorry if I was not clear in the question.
    – VarunAgw
    Feb 26, 2014 at 15:12
  • You don't prevent it @VarunAgw, a compromise on one application likely means a compromise for all.
    – GdD
    Feb 26, 2014 at 15:58
  • Could you please give me an example where it is not possible to keep safe the other application?
    – VarunAgw
    Feb 26, 2014 at 18:16

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