WordPress is becoming more common among businesses by the second. This is likely due to the ease of using the WP backend. These sites may be the most popular sites on the web, but they’re definitely not the most secure. This is something we pay special attention to since our site is on the framework too.
Securing a WordPress website is often referred to as “hardening” it. You can look at it as reinforcing a gate. Because cyber attacks are becoming more and more frequent, it is important to secure your website as best as you can. The good news is there are plenty of ways to secure your new website better than it was yesterday. We’re going to show you several tips that can beef up your protection right now.
6 Tips To Help With WP Security
1. Always Use A Reputable Security Plugin
Probably the easiest thing you can do is to install a security plugin. There are several good ones to choose from. My favorite is Wordfence Security. Wordfence is a pluging that was specifically designed to thwart hackers and malware attacks. I’ve never had a security issue since installing it. Before I was using it, my site did get infected with malware. It was an horrendous affair.
2. Only Use Reputable Themes/Plugins
In order to keep your website as secure as possible, only download themes and plugins from sources that you know are legitimate. You need to follow this rule because these themes and plugins are going to be from more reputable digital agencies that have a trackrecord of keeping their software secure. Downloading items from unknown sources is bad news and can leave your entire website vulnerable to an attack.
3. Keep Your Plugins Lean
Another thing that you want to do is make sure that you delete all of the plugins that you are not using. By doing this, it removes extra weight from your site. Every plugin you have increases your chances of getting malware. Stay lean and fit. Don’t be like the people that ignore the plugins they are not actively using. They’ll be the first ones infected while you continue to manage your malware free site in blissful ignorance of their malicious problems.
4. Use A Unique Username
Another common mistake that people make when they are creating WordPress websites is they keep their username as admin. When installing WordPress, they use admin as a placeholder, which they need to stop. This placeholder has become one of the most widely used usernames in the world, making it an easy guess for hackers. By avoiding using this as your username, you should be able to create a much safer login for your site. Try to use something that someone would not be able to guess, or at least your name.
5. Rotate Passwords Every 3 Months
Another important thing that you should do in order to keep your website on the safer side is to consistently change your password. Don’t go crazy, changing your password daily. But still keep a healthy rotation of passwords, never using the same one twice. You want to change your password on a regular basis because the longer you keep it the same, the more vulnerable it is going to be to attacks, especially brute force methods.
You also want to be sure that you are making your passwords strong by using a mix of uppercase and lowercase letters, as well as numbers and special characters. The days of using your birthday or the name of your high school as your password are long gone. Big data companies already sold that info to your would be hackers eons ago. If you’re too lazy for a strong password, try avoiding using terms that people could easily guess such as your address or a family members name.
6. Keep Your Website Updated
The first thing that you are going to want to do is update your site. This is very important because updates often contain security patches that fix vulnerabilities. By failing to update your site in a timely manner, you’re making yourself an easy target for these nefarious hackers. Luckily, updating a WordPress site is so easy even a caveman can do it. It’s as simple as clicking a couple of buttons. You don’t even have to check for updates. There should be a setting in your cpanel that you can set to notify you of any updates or auto update. If you choose to auto update WordPress then you won’t have to worry about manually updating it. However, if you auto update the plugins and theme, one of them could break your site and you wouldn’t know which one was the culprit. I would advise you to update your theme and plugins one by one.
The plugins need to be kept up to date just like your installation. If they aren’t updated, they can also become easy targets for malware. Plugin authors aren’t as well versed in security measures as the WordPress team, so they’re easy to hack into. Luckily, there are tons of different plugins so chances that your specific site and plugin are targeted are low. Even though your chances of being hacked through a plugin are low, it still happens to a lot of people every day. It’s even happened to me once and it’s terribly expensive to fix.
As you can see, there are plenty of different things that you can do in order to make your WordPress website as secure as possible. By implementing these tips, you should be able to effectively secure your website from potential attacks. It would be smart to follow all of these tips and not cherry pick over them. These are easy to follow and all of them are neccesities. If you leave out one, it’s like leaving a giant window on the first floor of your house wide open while criminals are lurking in your neighborhood. Why would you do that? Oh wait, you wouldn’t so don’t do it with your website either. It’s better to take the extra precautions listed above and play it safe. Trust me, you don’t want to have to deal with a malware attack. It’s a nightmare.