With this article, we are trying to provide you a few important tips to Secure Your WordPress Website and minimize any potential vulnerability.
WordPress powers over 30% of websites worldwide. It has around 50,000 plugins and tens of thousands of themes designed by developers that can be used to customize and add required functionality to a WordPress site.
‘WordPress isn’t safe to use’ is widespread but this simply isn’t the case as WordPress team work extremely hard to prevent security threats. Though, most of the vulnerabilities in WordPress are caused by poorly designed plugins and themes created by unskilled developers.
As above mentioned, people love to use WordPress because they don’t require any coding skills however, you should be aware that because WordPress is so commonly used, it’s a popular target for malicious attacks and hackers.
Types of hacks that occur on WordPress websites
There are two types of hacks (targeted and non-targeted) occur on a WordPress Website.
- Targeted attack: It is a kind of attack where a hacker deliberately breach your website. Mostly, It happens with popular websites where a hacker strongly disagree with the content of a website, or perhaps hold a grudge.
- Non-targeted: One of a kind, which isn’t aimed at anyone in particular. Hackers send out automated attacks capable of scanning a wide range of IP addresses that look for known security issues on a certain version of WordPress, or a plugin or theme. Once a weakness is found, there may be a chance it can be exploited.
There are a few other attacks such as backdoor attack, where a hacker still the important data while defacement is where an attacker deliberately changes the appearance of one or more of the pages of a website by disfiguring it. Part of the defacement may display the hacker’s name tag to “show off” their hacking skills.
Other than that, Malicious software can be installed on websites to spy on users’ or to spread further viruses. Hackers can also bring a website down by launching a denial of service attack, often “recruiting” other websites to assist them.
Important: Before making any changes to your website, you should run a full backup to ensure you can restore your site if there are any issues. If you’re not comfortable making these changes, we recommend hiring a developer to implement these tweaks for you.
Tips to Secure Your WordPress Website
We have provided enough details about WordPress security; it’s time to implement the following preventative measures to Secure Your WordPress Website.
Install a WordPress security plugin
There are several WordPress security plugin that you may come across but before installing any of them go through the configuration settings and documentation. A correctly set up plugin can mitigate a lot of the risk and reduce the likelihood that your website will get hacked.
- iThemes Security can prevent brute force attacks by stopping illegal login attempts; it is also good at finding bots that seek out weaknesses. In addition, this plugin can conceal vulnerabilities and run system scans.
- All in One Security & Firewall is a plugin that blocks user agents and IP addresses. It also provides database and user login security, so is definitely worth checking out.
- Wordfence Security offers security scanning and allows you to enforce two-factor authentication. Another great feature is that it identifies malicious attackers.
Don’t use common passwords
You shouldn’t be surprise that many people uses common password which can easily guessed. Also, one should avoid the sequential characters as password cracking software finds them easy to figure out.
In order to creating a secure password, ensure that you use a strong password generator that uses a combination of characters.
Change the default username
For a hacker, it’s far easier to identify the default WordPress site’s username of “admin”, and they can attack using it. Many of the site owners won’t have had the foresight to amend it. So, go ahead and make this critical change by creating a new user via Users > New User, and then give your new login administrative rights. Afterwards, sign in with your new administration account and delete the old default “admin” account.
Set up and enable two-factor authentication
You can further secure your WordPress installation by setting up two-factor authentication. It will prevent access to an intruder in the event that your login details are compromised. To enable this essential feature, you can use several plugins including Authy, Rublon, UNLOQ, and Keyy.
Assign the required access to a new user
Whenever, you allow access to your site to a new user, set up a new login which has no more security privileges required to enable them to do his or her job.
Turn off file editing
You should always keep a backup of your wp-config.php file and then make changes to the original by adding the text below:
By adding the above code, you can prevent hackers from making changes to your site via the appearance editor in WordPress.
Hide your version number
Try to remove your version number from display, add below the codes to your functions.php file (remember to take a original copy).
add_filter( ‘the_generator’, ‘__return_null’ );
The above code will prevent any malicious attacks to your site.
Update WordPress, plugins and themes regularly
It is advisable to update your core WordPress, plugins and themes regularly. Some of you may also feel it as a painful task to check that your site is always up to date. But, you shouldn’t worry about it as you can automate the updates process. Your themes and plugins will be updated automatically each time the latest version comes out.
To extend this functionality to your website, you can use the Advanced Automatic Updates plugin or alternatively add the code below to your wp-config.php file.
add_filter( ‘auto_update_theme’, ‘__return_true’ );
add_filter( ‘auto_update_plugin’, ‘__return_true’ );
Use the original and latest copy of themes and plugins
There are many websites today offering nulled version of premium plugins but we advise you to purchase them from reputable sites instead using them.
The consequence of downloading free premium plugins is that they can be infected with malware, meaning if you install them they will cause serious complications. Also, you should always look at reviews and find out when it was last updated. If a plugin or theme hasn’t been updated for a while, then it is possible that the developer is no longer working on it and it will be outdated. It is also wise to check for compatibility with your WordPress version.
At last, you need to keep an eye on the plugins that you have already installed. If you are no longer using them, uninstall them.
We believe this article has helped you to understand the kind of WordPress security and threat, and how to Secure Your WordPress Website from a hacker. If you find this article this relevant then share it over social media channels.