WordPress Security is a big topic these days. WordPress is one of the most popular platforms being used today. However, sites have been hacked and people are worried that WordPress isn't safe. It's estimated that 30,000 websites are hacked every day. It's scary but there is quite a bit you can do to protect your WordPress website. We’re going to talk briefly about how to secure your WordPress website.
There is Always a Risk Your Website Will Get Hacked
Your website can never be 100% secure. Hackers are always trying new things and discovering new ways to cause sites to go down. The online world changes quickly and the same is true of security. Good website security is about minimizing risk. If anybody tries to sell you a security solution and says it's 100% effective, they’re scamming you. Your website will never be totally safe, but there’s a lot you can do to reduce the threat.
3 Kinds of Security Your WordPress Site Needs
There are three stages to website security: defend, detect and restore. If you truly want to protect your site, you need to do all three.
- Defend - First and foremost you need to lock down your site and keep it safe. You’ve got to put in a defense system that can stop attacks to your website before they start.
- Detect - No matter how good your defense system is, the bad guys might find a way to hack your site. And you need to know when an assault is taking place. The attack won’t always be the kind that makes it obvious your website has been hacked. Sometimes the hackers are tricky and bots will put a bunch of hidden code into your site. It’s no good to have all kinds of security but then not know when some nasty virus found a weak spot and broke through. Malicious bots and hackers may have already broken into your site but the only way you'll know is with detection.
- Restore - Finally, you need a way to get your website up and running again after it’s been knocked down. These things happen. The best defense and detection strategies can still be thwarted and you need to be ready. Having a good backup is important to have so you can get your site restored as quickly as possible.
Best WordPress Security Practices
Keep Your WordPress Website Updated
One of the biggest security risks in WordPress is using old software. WordPress is updated pretty often and whenever there is a new threat out there, they put out an update right away. But that won't do you a bit of good if you don't keep your WordPress platform updated. You need to keep your themes and plugins updated as well—they can have security issues too.
Sometimes people put off doing updates because they are afraid of breaking their site. So you have to think if it is better to risk breaking your site or risking your site getting broken into. Another thing, just because a plugin isn't activated doesn’t mean it’s not a security threat. You need to delete the plugin entirely to eliminate the threat.
Use Strong Passwords on WordPress
Your security is only as good as your password. You need to use strong passwords. Your password should have numbers, capitals, special characters (@, #, *, etc.) and be long and unique.
Don’t use the same password in multiple places. Yes, remembering different passwords for different sites is hard, but having a hacked site is worse. You can use software like Dashlane or Lastpass to help keep your passwords.
Limit and Manage Users on WordPress Websites
Using a strong password yourself is useless if another administrator is using a weak one. You need to manage your users. Not everybody needs admin access. The more people that have admin access, the more chances there are to hack your site. Make sure you’re only giving administrator access to the people who truly need it. And make sure those few administrators are following good security practices such as using strong passwords that are also unique.
Backup Your WordPress Website
If anything ever goes wrong with your website, you want to be able to get it back up as quickly as possible. That means you need to have a good backup plan. In order for your backup plan to work without fail, it needs to be complete and automatic. Just doing a backup of your database isn’t enough. A database backup will save your content, but you’ll still have to rebuild your entire site, including any changes you made to your theme and plugin settings. And if your backup isn’t automatic, you’ll probably forget about it.
If you use your website for business purposes, you'll want to do everything in your power to keep it safe from hackers. However, if something does happen to ruin your site, you'll want to have a way to get it back up and running as soon as possible.
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