WordPress website security

WordPress is one of the world’s most popular and widely used content management systems (CMS), powering over 40% of all websites on the Internet. However, this popularity also makes WordPress a target for hackers and malicious actors who want to exploit its vulnerabilities and compromise its users’ data.

This guide will discuss some of the best practices and tips for securing your WordPress website and protecting it from cyberattacks.

Best Practices for Securing Your WordPress Website

Protect your WordPress website from cyber-attacks with these proven ways.

Choose a reliable web hosting provider

A good web host will offer features such as SSL certificates, firewall protection, malware scanning, backups and updates.

Update WordPress core, themes and plugins regularly

Updating your WordPress software is essential for fixing bugs, improving performance and adding new features.

It also helps prevent hackers from exploiting outdated or vulnerable code. Depending on your preferences and settings, you can update WordPress manually or automatically.

Use strong passwords and two-factor authentication

A strong password is long, complex and unique. It should not contain personal or common information, such as your name, birthday or favourite colour. You can use a password manager to generate and store your passwords securely.

Two-factor authentication (2FA) provides an extra layer of security. It requires you to enter a code or use an app on your phone to verify your identity when logging in to your website.

You can enable 2FA on WordPress using plugins such as Jetpack or Google Authenticator.

Limit login attempts

Implement a plugin or security feature that restricts the number of failed login attempts. This measure prevents brute-force attacks and unauthorised access attempts to your WordPress admin panel.

Remove unused themes and plugins

Eliminate any inactive or unnecessary themes and plugins from your WordPress installation. These can serve as potential entry points for attackers if not regularly maintained and updated.

Install and configure security plugins

Security plugins are tools that help you enhance the security of your WordPress website. These add features such as a firewall, antivirus, spam protection, brute force prevention, login lockdown and more.

Some popular security plugins for WordPress are Wordfence, Sucuri, iThemes Security and All In One WP Security.

Enable Web Application Firewall

A Web Application Firewall (WAF) adds an extra layer of security to your website. It actively monitors and filters the traffic between your web application and the Internet. It safeguards against a wide range of malicious attacks, such as cross-site scripting and SQL injection.

WAFs can work in two different ways: allowing only trusted traffic to pass through (whitelist approach) or blocking known attack patterns (blacklist approach).

Many WordPress security plugins, including WordFence and Sucuri, offer WAF features. Cloudflare also provides WAF services.

Get DDOS Protection Service

Use a DDoS protection service like Cloudflare to monitor and mitigate DDoS attacks. These attacks flood your website with excessive traffic, making it inaccessible to genuine users.

A DDoS protection service detects and filters suspicious traffic, allowing only legitimate visitors to access your site. It redirects and filters out malicious traffic during attacks, ensuring uninterrupted website availability.

Define User Roles

WordPress lets you set many user roles, including Administrator, Editor, Author, and Contributor.

Defining user roles will help to secure your WordPress site. It can prevent unauthorised changes or accidental deletion of content. It can also limit the damage done by hackers if one of the user accounts but not the admin account is compromised.

Back up your website in case of an emergency

Backing up your website means creating a copy of your files and database. In case of hacking, corruption or deletion, you can restore your website from the backup.

You can back up your website manually or automatically using plugins such as UpdraftPlus, BackupBuddy or VaultPress.

Securing your WordPress website is paramount to protect it from cyberattacks and safeguard your users’ data. Follow this guide to lower the risk of unauthorised access, malware infections, and other security breaches.