WordPress is non arguably the world’s most popular CMS boasting about half the market share worldwide. It’s no surprise given that it has been around for long, plus it has lots of excellent features that developers love.
That said, its popularity also means that it’s a target from cyber attackers who prey on WordPress sites that aren’t well protected. So, don’t be the next victim of WordPresstargeted attacks! So, what to do to secure from hackers. Do not worry! We have compiled some key steps you should follow to tighten your WordPress Security.
SSL stands for Secure Socket Layer and it’s a protocol that implements client-server security on websites and secures data between the server and the browsers. You can enable SSL security by installing what’s known as an SSL certificate. This way you will be able to protect you and your users, especially if your site handles sensitive data like credit card info and the likes.
Let’s Encrypt offer Free SSL certificates.
There are many types of SSL certificates you can buy depending on your WordPress website. For example, you can buy a multi domain SSL that secures your site’s main domain along with other domains and subdomains under it. The bottom line is that you need to buy the right SSL for your WordPresswebsite.
Focus Theme and Plugin Security
One of the easiest ways an attacker can infiltrate your WordPresssite is by using themes and plugins. There are features we love with the WordPress architecture and unfortunately some of the cool themes and WordPressplugins aren’t free.
Some rogue developers often pirate those themes and plugins giving free access to the community. Sounds like a good deal? It might not be.
Most of the pirated versions can be a potential risk to your WordPress Website. It’s no brainer that rogue developers will reverse engineer these products and you certainly can’t trust they would just want to hand it free to you without hiding some malicious code in there.
Generally, you ought to be careful about the plugins and themes whether free or paid. Here are a few security tips to keep in mind when dealing with WordPress plugins and themes:
- Install only themes and plugins from trusted sources( the more the reviews they have, the better)
- Update your themes and plugins whenever new versions are released
- Deactivate and uninstall outdated plugins and themes
Secure Your WordPress Passwords
Password security is another aspect of WordPress security that’s often ignored. It’s often simple steps like changing your passwords frequently, using long form hard-to-guess passwords etc.
In fact, a common type of attack used against WordPress websites is what is known as a brute force attack. This is where an attacker tries to guess your login passwords and it will definitely be easier if your passwords are easy to crack.
- Set expiring passwords for sensitive applications like banking
- Set sessions for your WordPress site users
- Add a Layer of Authentication
Adding layers of authentication is another way to reduce chances of hackers accessing your site through attacks like brute force. In other words, you don’t want someone to gain access to your site by just cracking your passwords and that’s it!
You can add another layer of challenge to make it even tougher. A good example is what’s known as two-factor authentication (2FA) where you can add something like an SMS verification on top of the normal username/email-password combination.
Change Your WordPress Login Page
Another way to reduce brute-force attacks and attacks like Denial of Service (DOS) is to change your WordPress login pages from the default ones hence making it harder for hackers to try and attack your site.
HideMyWP is a very powerful and popular security plugin which offers a lot of features to secure your WordPress site.
Changing your WordPresslogin page is quite easy. Simply find a plugin that customizes the login URL, install it on your WordPress and you are good to go.
Filter Traffic to Your WordPress Site
You can also protect your WordPress Website by filtering traffic particularly those that look suspicious. For example, you can block traffic from locations you don’t expect any visitors from.
You can limit IPs that can access your WordPresslogin and dashboard pages. Again, there are lots of tools that can help build such rules and restrictions like using firewall plugins, using CAPTCHA challenge etc.
Secure Your WordPress Files and Database
A third-party host will help to secure your site at the hosting level, but you will still have work to on your site to secure your WordPressfiles. For example, you should ensure that the file permissions are correct to avoid security breach. Here are other ways to secure your WordPress Files and DB:
- Change the database prefix from the default one
- Disable PHP file execution to prevent malicious code running on the backend,
- Disable directory browsing
- Hide wp-config.php and .htaccess files
Assign Proper User Privileges
Every user on your team should be assigned privileges based on their roles. This way you only prevent vulnerabilities targeting your WordPressusers. High level WordPressprivileges should only be assigned on users who can undertake and protect that responsibility.
Backup your WordPress Site
Finally, backup your site regularly to ensure you have a point of recovery in case any unwanted situation arises. There are third-party backup plugins, web host, website maintenance service, and manually ways that will help you to take backup on regular base.
JetPack is one of the best plugin to backup and secure your website, if offers a lot of features and Backup is one of them. Install Jetpack and use Backup features.
Disaster can hit your website anytime like a downtime can translate to business loss which is the reason why you should do frequent backup. It is wise to preferably schedule automatic backups to make it easier for you.
We have covered some of the core security steps you should take to secure your WordPress site, hence protecting your business. There is definitely not all but it should help you set the ball rolling in terms of WordPresssecurity.