December 21, 2016
It’s great that you have a WordPress-based website. Reports suggest more than 17 million websites are powered by the WordPress framework.
If you have a WordPress website and you don’t know how you can make your website secure, this article is for you. Let’s make your website secure.
Do you know that outdated WordPress framework and plugins put your website at high risk of hack attacks?
Below, we discuss five strategies that will help you to make your website secure.
Change admin user:
I am a WordPress developer by profession, I have seen a lot of websites using admin as their default administration user name and, even worse, they use admin as their password as well.
Using admin as the username makes it easier for hackers to compromise your site — they only need to figure out your password.
Delete the admin username and use a strong password. To make it easier, WordPress framework now ships with password strength indicator.
Choose a password that turns the password strength indicator green.
How about adding an extra layer of security? WordPress comes with high default security parameters. But as you start adding plugins and other custom codes, having an added layer of security is a big plus for your website.
If you are looking for a free solution to start with, I would recommend Wordfence. It’s available in both free and premium versions. It’s like a firewall to your website.
The free version is good enough to start with. It will help you keep that spammy bot away, force the strong password to all your users and scan your website files for malware.
If you are more interested in anti-malware solutions, you should have a look at sucuri. It does a good job keeping malware away from your website.
Limit login attempts:
Do you know that you can try an unlimited number of times to log in to your WordPress admin area? If I know your username I can try multiple times to login into your system — until I guess the correct password.
What if I had an automated script that makes password combinations with the correct username? I may eventually get the right combination that makes an authorized entry into your system.
To handle this situation, you can install a free plugin called wp-limit-login. This plugin will help you block those people trying to access your account with a proxy script.
The plugin will block the login attempts for 10 minutes when a specified number of false login attempts have been made. You can even ban the IP address to block the access in future as well.
If you want a single line answer, update EVERYTHING. Updates help you make your website secure.
WordPress regularly releases an update for its framework. The minor security updates take place automatically. And in the case of a major framework release, you just need to hit the update link on the dashboard.
These updates bring the required security fixes and fixes to all identified bugs and code vulnerability.
Update all the plugins as soon as the update is released. All well-maintained plugins offer regular updates.
Plugins are the most common source of hacks, so only use and install trusted and necessary plugins.
Keep your WordPress website junk free. Delete all the unnecessary and unused plugins from your website.
The same applies to the themes. A well-maintained theme will always release an update. Update your theme(s) as soon as they are available.
There are few chances that a theme will make a hack possible. But there is no reason to keep all those old and unused themes installed on your WordPress website. Remove them.
Are you familiar with Google Webmaster Tools? No? It’s a tool by Google to check various parameters related to your website.
If you don’t have an account, use your Google account to sign up for this service. The integration process is very smooth and guided. You first need to upload a file for your domain ownership verification.
There are a ton of official documentation and other articles available on how you should use this tool and how it’s helpful for your website.
I am very much interested in the spam alert facility if offers. If your website was hacked and affected with malware, Google webmaster tools will notify you. Google has a decent malware recognition algorithm in place which sends you an alert when malware is found on your site.
WordPress is, without doubt, a powerful CMS framework, but there is something you can always do to make your WordPress website more secure. Following all the six points: Removing admin user, adding security layer, limiting login, keeping everything updated, and usage of Google Webmaster Tool will help you make your website secure.
Joshi Darshan is a founder of AlphansoTech. He is a passionate Web and WordPress developer. Being a founder of an Innovative WordPress development company, he regularly shares in-depth WordPress related articles and how-to guides.