When it comes to website security, even an iota of prevention is really worth a large pool of measures to restore a website from its affected state. WordPress websites are most vulnerable to security attacks from sophisticated hackers as well as the bots that are capable of exploiting security vulnerabilities. These security vulnerabilities range from weak passwords, outdated themes and plugins, and poor-quality web hosting.
But, there are several time-tested measures that can prevent such security compromises and risks and keep a website performing and secure.
Make Use of Strong Passwords
Weak passwords often cause security risks for websites. You can prevent such risks by using strong passwords and for this, you can use tracking tools such as 1Password that can track all the passwords and prevent you from using the same password on all your internet accounts. The tool also prevents you from using easy and easily rememberable passwords. Thanks to the tool you can only use unmemorable, long, difficult passwords.
Using this tool you can easily test the strength of the existing passwords and can create passwords that are long, complex and not easy to guess. The tool helps you maintain all your web accounts with strong passwords.
Updating WordPress Core, Themes and Plugins
Most updates of the WordPress core, or the themes and plugins, come to mitigate the security loopholes and risks. This is why making updates once a month is far from enough. Whenever a vulnerability will surface, your non-updated website can be the first victim of the security risk. This is why one must update as soon as there is an available update. For all the plugins that don’t come with important features and functions, one can use a Shield WordPress Security plugin to auto-update.
Insist on WordPress Hardening
There are several WordPress hardening methods that can easily prevent hacking from taking place. Let’s have a quick look at these hardening methods.
- Add extra allow/deny rules through your .htaccess file.
- Keep login URLs restricted to specific IP range(s).
- Safeguard your wp-config file.
- Prevent image hotlinking and mobile directory browsing.
- Do not use public WiFi or VPN to log in to the website.
- Remove unused WordPress plugins and files.
- Keep the server clean.
Prevent a WordPress Hack with a Website Firewall
A vast majority of WordPress websites are frequently hacked as they are more vulnerable to security risks than other CMS platforms. A common issue that security experts stumble upon often is that WordPress version update is often not possible, thanks to the incapabilities of plugins or themes. This is when a WordPress website can easily become vulnerable to hacks.
For such cases, enabling a WordPress firewall is strongly recommended to provide security patches for your website. A Web Application Firewall (WAF), when enabled, can take on such security risks. A WAF basically works like a pass for your website visitor traffic, and effectively filters out bad requests comprising hack attempts, exploits, DoS attacks and many more.
A WordPress firewall does the following things to strengthen WordPress security:
- Prevents all future hacking attempts by detecting and thwarting all hacking methods and behaviors, thus keeping your WordPress website protected against malicious attacks.
- The firewall provides a virtual security update for your WordPress website software, even when the website doesn’t have any new security updates.
- A WordPress firewall also blocks brute force attacks or any unwanted visitors from accessing the wp-admin or wp-login page and makes use of brute force automation to detect your password.
- It deals with Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks that basically try to overload a web server or the resources of an application with too many requests. By blocking DDoS attacks, a WAF ensures constant accessibility and performance of a WordPress website in all circumstances.
- A WordPress firewall helps boost WordPress performance by storing website caches and keeping bounce rate lower. This also ensures optimum website engagement, business conversions and steady search engine ranking.
- The cloud-based WordPress firewall solutions, besides preventing attacks, also boost WordPress website speed by using a Content Delivery Network (CDN).
Make Sure You Have an SSL Certificate Installed
This is a basic and very important security measure for most websites. It safeguards data by encrypting the data you and users use and transfer via a website. For example, when one submits a contact form or uses login in web pages, the data that is transferred remains encrypted. With SSL installed on a website, secure login can be ensured even while traveling. While some hosts and hosting plans provide this for free, with some you need to use a separate SSL plugin for the purpose.
Avail Better Web Hosting
Choosing good hosting companies can also be crucial for your WordPress security. Some hosting service providers such as WP Engine, Kinsta, Site Ground and a few others are great for WordPress security. These service providers take care of routine security scans and provide cleaning of hacked websites for free. Apart from performance, one should also consider security aspects for website hosting.
Taking Backup of Your Site
Though taking regular backups may not always be effective for preventing a WordPress hack, they can sometimes play a great role in disaster recovery. It is particularly useful in preventing a website database from damages due to malicious attacks.
Continuous Website Monitoring
Finally, continuous monitoring of websites can help greatly in tracking and mitigating security risks of all types. Setting Google Search Console alert is important concerning all issues on your website. Apart from that, you should monitor the error logs on your website through the cPanel File Manager or FTP (SFTP). You should also see the Raw Access Logs on the server to keep track of the users accessing website files on the site. You should also use a plugin called Shield WordPress Security plugin and use its Audit Trail feature to keep track of all the file changes and website accessibility issues.
All the above-mentioned ways are time tested as successful to prevent security attacks and keep security vulnerabilities at check. These measures, besides a meticulous choice of plugins and themes, can help a WordPress website perform well and remain secure.
WordPress Hacks: Best Ways to Protect WordPress from Hacking – DevOps.com