WordPress has emerged as a major platform for not only blogging, but has also become a popular web platform. Today, more than 70 million websites run on WordPress, which has also made it a favorite target for hackers and cyber criminals. Due to this, importance of securing your WordPress site has increased many folds. Web Security, especially WordPress security has now become an increasingly hot topic in the industry. It has become so important these days that even specialized services have popped up to protect your WordPress site.
One of the easiest and best ways to keep your WordPress website secure is to install the latest WordPress version. In addition to this, the WordPress dashboard keeps you up to date on the security of your platform. If there is a flaw, the current version quickly identifies it and isolates it before it spreads and causes complications.
Old versions are more prone to attacks because the loophole information goes public. This is why it is strongly recommended that you update your WordPress to the latest version to protect it from malicious attacks. Read the Developer’s blog to know more about how to keep your WordPress website secure. You can also monitor the WordPress.org Security and Maintenance News to stay abreast of the latest.
Secure WordPress Download and Install
WordPress is available from a variety of third party sources, but it is highly recommended that you download WordPress from their official website (https://wordpress.org/). Downloading WordPress from third party sources puts you at risk because these sources do not offer official releases, which means there is a good chance your website can catch a virus soon after you download it.
WordPress Security Plug-ins
WordPress also has a plug-in directory where you can find many useful security plug-ins that can make it easy for the website owner to keep track of the security of his website. WordPress security plug-ins can act as a firewall. So, they are quite useful. Wordfence (http://www.wordfence.com/) is a very powerful WordPress plug-in that provides protection from attacks even when your website is loading. However, there are many other plug-ins that you can download to secure your website. A few more WordPress Security Plugins:
Delete all those plug-in that you rarely use and instead download plug-ins that you are more familiar with using. Please realize that plug-ins that contain executable codes are more vulnerable to malicious attacks.
You can avoid almost half of the security issues by following good security practices. One of the most important elements of your website’s security is a strong password. To help you out, WordPress has a password meter, which measures the strength of your password. In addition, do not use the default user name “Admin” and instead choose a custom name and ensure it has admin rights. Here’s a great article on how to quickly and easily lockdown your WordPress site:
A solid password is necessary not only to protect your website or blog content, but also to prevent hackers from getting the administrator rights of your account. They will run malicious scripts, which can give them access to the entire server. Another thing that you can do is to use a two-step verification process. This will add another layer of security to keep all hackers out.
Things to Avoid When Setting a Password
- Short passwords
- A commonly used word
- Name, company name, name of the website, etc
Security themes provide another layer of security for different aspects of your WordPress website. It Is a comprehensive solution that covers the following:
Preparing for the worst and acquiring appropriate knowledge about how to tackle different situations is an important part of securing your WordPress website or blog. Regularly make backups of your data so that you can recover from a disaster easily. Keep an eye on the notifications and news from WordPress.
Even if the hacker somehow manages to get into your system, you should have a mechanism in place to minimize the damage he can do. Having a system like this in place will save you from a headache later on.
Choosing the right Source for Security Themes
Get a security theme for your WordPress blog or website from a trusted WordPress source, otherwise a security theme (or plugin) can actually create more security issues rather than protect your from them.
WordPress Security Issues
The battle between hackers and security professionals is heating up. Hackers want to exploit the vulnerability and security professionals want to make the system as secure as possible. Software companies regularly release updates to fix security flaws in their systems. Older versions of software and applications (plugins, themes, etc) are more vulnerable to attacks since hackers are already familiar with the coding, so it’s critical that you always update your software (WordPress, Themes, Plugins) to the latest release as soon as possible.
Web Server Security Issues
Your web server that is running WordPress and the software can also become a target for attackers. Therefore, it is important to run a stable version of the software on your server. Choose a reliable host for your website. If possible, use a dedicated server for your website (can be fairly costly however) as shared servers have inherently more risk. For instance, if one website on the same server that hosts your website is compromised, then your website is at a major risk of being compromised. We suggest using HostGator.com web hosting which has a wide assortment of shared and dedicated web servers at pricing that will meet any budget. They also do a great job of securing their servers, as well as reacting quickly and professionally in the event of a hacker attack or server or website malware.
After reading this article, you hopefully have realized the many vulnerabilities inherent in WordPress and Web hosts / servers in general. However, as highlighted above, there are a number of proactive measures you can take to protect your WordPress account and website from malicious hackers. You have to do what you can and ask your host to do the same to protect your website, and quite possibly your reputation and livelihood. Always install the latest version of WordPress and use strong passwords along with encrypting your website.