WordPress is a content management system, that allows creators to produce plugins, themes, and other essentials. Creating a system where, each developer has to keep their plugin up to date, or their plugin can become a vulnerability to your website. WordPress has minimal control over the security levels and the security of the plugins that are uploaded and installed by users. There are many techniques we can use to decrease the possibility of any form of infiltration.
There are a few sites that showcase the security breaches of WordPress code, including their updates, breaches and more. This gives you an insight into what the current security flaws and breaches inside WordPress and what you can do to protect your website.
There are a few ways to keep your WordPress site secure and to maintain that, here are a few examples:
1. Updating WordPress, its themes, and plugins associated with your website.
All most all website that has been breached, hacked, or compromised is due to outdated WordPress framework, plugins, or themes the website is running off.
Updating your WordPress website as well as your themes and plugins will decrease the security risk, as developers update their plugins, their security systems and old breaches get patched, therefore decreasing the risk of a security breach. In the simplest terms update your plugins regularly!
While some people see nulled plugins as a way to save money, it can lead to security breaches down the track. Nulled plugins are plugins that have been cracked by a third party and then posted on the internet for “Free”. Most of the time the plugins have been compromised and have malicious malware, other scripts or backdoors. Once you install the plugin they then track you and then potentially breach all your information and websites data while also allowing a way for them to breach into your website/server that could lead to never recovering your website again.
2. Updated PHP Version
PHP is apart of the framework when it comes to the security of your website and the website as a whole, it is recommended in the industry to not stray any further than two versions behind the most current version. Updating PHP can cause a few things to happen, so when updating PHP you have to take all the precautions you can, that being:
- Backing up your website
- Backing up plugin versions
- Backing up content
Once that is done you may then proceed with updating PHP, but due to the complications of many conflicting add-ons, themes, and other additives, it makes it more likely to break when updating your PHP versions.
3. Installing WordFence or other protective security plugins
Security plugin is beneficial for many reasons, some of those being; blocking force entry attacks, scan for malware and protect your site in many other ways. Making sure you pick the right security plugin could make or break whether your website stays secure or not. Some security practices you can do are:
- Add two-step authenticator to login page
- Limit number of login attempts
- Block certain IP’s from accessing that page
- Use strong passwords and usernames
Securing your WordPress databases is of utmost importance as well because that’s where all your websites information is stored. Your website will become highly vulnerable if you used defaults when creating a WordPress database.
4. Uninstall unused plugins
Uninstalled plugins are major security risks for WordPress websites, the less you have the better. So always check your plugins and make sure you aren’t using more than necessary or holding onto ones you don’t use anymore, as doing so increases the potential for security breaches.
How do I distinguish between a plugin I need and a plugin that isn’t needed? There are a few ways to do this one being a general purpose for the plugin, are you currently using its features or addons? Do you need to use them? You should be asking all these questions and if you don’t have a definite yes response to them then you should remove them!
5. Consider converting to a static Website
Static websites are websites that aren’t updated regularly and there are no interactive elements, for example, help forums, a blog comment section, and more. This is because PHP is required for this, which is an issue when it comes to security.
The benefits of converting to a static website are endless but so are the limitations, is it viable for your business? Do you need databases to run and keep generating business? If so this may not be for you.
If not then static websites are incredible to use, as they are faster than most websites out there due to not needing to connect to databases. Also allowing you to not having plugins or excess files in your website causing delays and possible security risks. Your page is your page when statically coded in HTML.
6. Enable SSL
SSL Certificates are an important factor when it comes to not only ranking well in google but as well as the security of the information of users that enter their information onto your site. So even if hackers attempt to grab the user’s information it is encrypted via your SSL.
Now you may be wondering why do I need an SSL, there are many reasons to why you should have an SSL Certificate on your website the most important being securing Credit Card Transactions, Data Transfers and Logins, it is starting to become the norm for websites, so making sure your SSL is working is an important factor in the overall security for your website.
SSL average 99$ a year! Now think about that, less then 10$ a month and you’ll save yourself many court dates if you are breached, as none of the information given to you is encrypted unless you have an SSL. Now for less than 10$ a month, I can’t think of a better deal to secure your website!
7. Google ReCAPTCHA2 and ReCAPTCHA3
Does your contact form have Google ReCaptcha, find out why you need it. Google ReCaptcha stops bots from spamming your emails with potential marketing scams, email scams, spam or other forms of malware attached in emails.
What is the difference between ReCAPTCHA V2 verse V3 and what happened to version 1? Well, version one was shut down in March 2018, since then Google has released additional versions of ReCAPTCHA. Which one do you need? Well ReCAPTCHA V2 is a more simplistic ReCAPTCHA requiring fewer verifications.
Whereas ReCAPTCHA V3 is a more in-depth human authenticator requiring a score to pass and if the score isn’t reached it’ll continue to test until it believes it is no longer a bot. Depending on the purpose of your website, indicates the level of ReCAPTCHA you will need.
8. WordPress Login URL & Details
Do you log in via www.yoursite.com/wp-login.php? You may want to change it if it is because bots will attempt to make brute force entries to default WordPress login URL’s as well as DDOS’ing your webpage login. Using this plugin you can change the login URL and also add if they attempt to go to www.yoursite.com/wp-login.php they’ll end up on a page you pick or a 404 Page, therefore eliminating any risk of a brute force entry through default settings for the login page.
One of the major security risks throughout the WordPress community is not having a secure login page. As well as not taking proper security measures, for example, increasing password length and sophistication is an overlooked factor in most WordPress websites out there. Not taking this precaution will increase the risk of security breaches through brute force attacks.
Another tip is to limit the number of login attempts that users can make before being locked out of your website for a certain amount of time. This decreases the risk of data breaches, as the person conducting the attack will be limited to the number of attempts they can proceed with at a time. Making it an incredibly tedious task to breach your WordPress website, and allowing you the time to detect them before they get in.
Have you configured your User roles and permissions? User roles and permissions is another security risk to a lot of WordPress websites as owners overlook this.
Making sure you have configured your User roles correctly will decrease the risk of a security breach. Allowing User roles to have more permission than they require will permit hackers that have acquired their login or got in through other methods a way to tamper with your website.
Technology Business Write For Us blog post is related to technology at Developergang
9. Disabling xmlrpc.php
XMLRPC (Extensible Markup Remote Procedure Call) is a protocol to allows connections from remote locations to the server. Disabling this will disallow any remote connections therefore decreasing the risk majorly.
“According to Wikipedia, XML-RPC is a remote procedure call which uses XML to encode its calls and HTTP as a transport mechanism.” Due to this being such an empowering element. The security of your website is important so disabling this is advised to avoid any possibility at breaches. Most WordPress websites have this feature disabled, but there’s no harm in double-checking!
To find out more on how our experts at SEO Expert Gold Coast can help you keep your WordPress website safe, get in contact today to find out how we can help you.
Also Read: Notable eCommerce SEO tips for your business