WordPress is the most popular content management system (CMS) by millions of experienced webmasters. More than 27% of the world’s websites are using this platform and has a massive online community. Using the platform, you can quickly build a fully functional website without any complicated HTML and CSS code. Having such an open source code WordPress becomes an easy target for hackers, DDoS and brute force attacks. If any hacker gains admin access of your site, he or she may steal your data, redirect users to another website or serve malware to online visitors. WP community works hard to beef up the WordPress cyber security from cyber threats as best as it can.
Why WordPress Cyber Security is Important?
Your WordPress website is your brand, your storefront and also your first contact with customers. If it’s not safe and secure it can cause serious damage to your business revenue and reputation. The WordPress Cyber Security threats can come in many forms like spread malware to site visitors, stealing user personal information – names, password and email addresses, stealing credit card and other transaction information, and even hijacking or crashing the site.
In worst case, you may find yourself paying ransomware to hackers just to regain access to your website.
If your website is for business purpose, you have to pay extra attention to security.
Here are some of the WordPress cyber security tips to protect your website from hackers.
1. Avoid to use so many plugins for protection of WordPress Cyber Security
Plugins extend the functionalities of your website effortlessly. It is not wise to install so many plugins at once. This is not just in terms of WordPress Cyber Security but also regarding the speed and performance of it as well.
Sometimes vulnerable plugins offer a medium through which a hacker can penetrate your site. With that security vulnerability a hacker can gain admin access or other unauthorized privileges.
You don’t need to install two plugins having the same performance or duty. Only choose trusted, reputed and updated plugins. Always choose the plugins that fit your desired criteria and just roll with that. Keep in mind that outdated plugins are more likely to contain security vulnerabilities than current, up-to-date plugins.
2. Two-factor Authentication login for WordPress Cyber Security
The two-factor authentication is one of the simplest and highly effective tactics of fending off brute force attacks. For this method, you are require two things; a password and an authorization code that is sent to your mobile phone number via SMS to login to your site. There are some plugins that make use of this feature like Clef, Duo Two-Factor Authentication, and Google Authenticator.
3. Update WordPress and Scripts for WordPress Cyber Security
By keeping update of WordPress and scripts is another way of protecting your site from potential hacking incidents. As you know, WordPress is a open source platform and the code is up for grabs for both developers and hackers.
As such, hackers are able to security loopholes around those codes and find a way to attack your site. And all they have to do is to exploit the weaknesses of the platform and script.
WordPress developers are always active to discover a security vulnerability and usually they fix it by releasing a new version with the necessary security modifications. So, sites having the older version will remain susceptible to the vulnerability.
So, for best protection, you must update your site’s WordPress installation either by automatically or manually by clicking the “Please update now” button at the top of your site’s dashboard.
4. Set a Strong Password for WordPress Cyber Security
A strong or unique password is the first defense against cyber threats. A study says that 8 percent of all brute-force attack on WordPress are for weak password. If your site has a weak password, a hacker can use some algorithm to automatically spam your site’s login with thousands of phrases until he or she finds the right one.
WordPress now features a password generator that creates iron-clad passwords consisting of uppercase, lowercase, numbers, and special characters. You can also use the generated password rather than using an easy-to-remember word or phrase.
5. Use HTTPS for WordPress Cyber Security
Change your URL from HTTP to HTTPS to create a secure connection that’s less susceptible to cyber threats. There is a huge shortfall in standard HTTP protocol. With that protocol, a hacker can see all data transmitted between your site and its visitors by using a man-in-the-middle (MITM) attack. HTTPS has the prevention for this type of attack. All data of your site and visitors are encrypted and no can see this.
To upgrade your WordPress with HTTPS, you have to purchase an SSL certificate from a certificate authority. For further information contact with your web host.
6. Limit Login Attempts for WordPress Cyber Security
WordPress have no limitation on number of times you can attempt to log in. If you forget your password, you can keep trying without WordPress locking you out. Hackers generally uses this facility and try to log into your site as many times as they want.
But you can limit the number of login attempts by installing a plugin such as WP Limit Login Attempts. If anybody attempts to log in to your website using the wrong username and password combination five or more consecutive times, the plugin will lock them out for 10 minutes.
7. Rename Login URL for WordPress Cyber Security
Renaming the login URL is an easy thing to do. By default, the WordPress login page can be accessed easily via yourwebsite(dot)com/wp-admin for the login URL. When hackers know or suspects your site is running WordPress, they will use the direct URL of your login page and attempt to log in as the administrator.
To change your site’s login URL, you can install a plugin such as WPS Hide Login. Once installed, if someone try to use your URL to login, it will display a message “Oops! That page can’t be found.”
8. Install Cyber Security Plugin for WordPress Cyber Security
You can also install security plugins from the WordPress plugin directory. After searching you will get dozens of cyber security plugins. Some of the plugins may offer you daily monitoring of everything such as malware detection, vulnerability identification, and active virus scanning in addition to cyber security.
9. Change your admin username for WordPress Cyber Security
Normally a hacker only needs two things to log in to your WordPress site and modify the HTML code; the administrator’s username and the corresponding password. By default, WordPress creates the administrator account with “admin” username, which is displayed at the top or bottom of new posts. It is very easy to guess for the hackers. Therefore, they need to figure out the password to get the full access of your site.
To protect your WordPress site from this type of vulnerability, change your username to someone other than “admin”. For that purpose just login to your site and navigate to Users > Add New, after which you can create a new username with the Administrator role. When created, access the new user under Users > All Users and create a different name at the “Nickname” field. Finally, click the drop-down box for “Display name publicly as” and select/type the new nickname. WordPress will now show your nickname in posts and pages instead of your admin username.
10. Backups regularly to secure your WordPress website for WordPress Cyber Security
No matter how secure your WordPress website is, there is always Chance for improvements. But at the end of the day, keeping an off-site backup somewhere is perhaps the best solution no matter what happens.
If you have a backup, you can restore your WordPress website to a working stage at any time you want.
There are plugins that automatically create backups. But you can create a backup manually in just a few easy steps. By using a File Transfer Protocol (FTP) program you can download your site’s files from its server and site’s database from your web hosting control panel (cPanel).
If you are a beginner then there are lot of things you can take in. However, the tips that we mentioned above is just a step in the right direction. The more you care about your WordPress site security, the better your guard against unauthorized attacks will be.
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