Did you know that WordPress sites suffer an average of 90,000 attacks per minute? As a business owner, you know security is everything. And with cyber attacks on the rise, safeguarding your WordPress site is more important than ever.
Not sure if your WordPress website is secure?
Don't worry; we've got you covered.
By the end of this article, you'll know the importance of WordPress security and how to improve it - from essential plugins to best practices.
Your website is your online salesperson - a crucial tool in building your brand, attracting customers and generating revenue. Protecting sensitive information like customer data from unauthorized access is a must.
As a small business owner or marketing manager, it's crucial to make website security a priority, especially when using WordPress.
Keep reading to learn how to keep your site secure and your customers happy.
With all that said, you might be wondering...
Isn't WordPress already a secure platform? Why are there so many cyber-attacks?
Yes, WordPress is secure by default.
However, it is crucial to keep the software updated and follow best practices to keep the hackers at bay.
So, let's say you ignore the extra security measures...
What can happen?
If your website has a data breach, you might face:
Small business owners and marketing managers must prioritize website security, especially when using WordPress due to the platform's popularity among hackers. A secure site protects sensitive information and can improve search engine rankings, while a breach can lead to loss of trust, data theft, downtime, and potential legal issues. Implementing strong security measures is crucial for safeguarding against cyberattacks, as WordPress sites experience an average of 90,000 attacks per minute.
You probably already know that out of the numerous amounts of CMS tools online, WordPress is one of the most popular.
And because of its popularity, WordPress websites are some of the mostly targeted websites by hackers and cybercriminals.
But by understanding the common security threats targeting WordPress websites, you can take proactive measures to safeguard your website from potential problems.
Here's a list of the common ways hackers exploit vulnerabilities:
Cross-site scripting, or XSS, happens when an attacker injects malicious scripts into web applications through input fields such as comment forms and search boxes.
To prevent WordPress XSS attacks on your site, make sure to sanitize all user inputs and use secure coding practices.
Hackers often use brute-force attacks to gain unauthorized access to your website by trying multiple username-password combinations until they find one that works.
Imagine someone finding your basic information through social media like Facebook and LinkedIn. And then guessing your passwords.
If your password is your first name and your birthday, how long do you think it would take the hacker to gain access? Could you prevent a brute-force attack?
To keep your site safe and limit security vulnerabilities, you could:
Database injections involve attackers injecting harmful SQL queries into your database through vulnerable plugins or themes.
To prevent this from happening, it's important to keep all plugins and themes up-to-date with the latest security patches. And it also wouldn't hurt to consider using a reputable security plugin that scans for known vulnerabilities.
Backdoors are hidden entry points that hackers create to bypass standard authentication methods and gain access to your website.
To prevent backdoor attacks, always:
We've all heard of it...
The blue screen of death.
In a denial-of-service attack, an attacker overwhelms your server with fake traffic or requests, causing it to crash or become unresponsive.
A firewall solution that filters out malicious traffic can be implemented to protect against DoS attacks and prevent users from being tricked into revealing sensitive information through phishing.
Or you can also use a hosting account with a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) protection service to safeguard your WordPress site from such attacks.
Phishing attacks involve tricking users into revealing sensitive information, such as login credentials, through deceptive emails or websites disguised as legitimate ones.
It's important to educate yourself and other users on how to recognize phishing attempts and ensure that you have proper security measures in place, like secure sockets layer (SSL) certificates for secure data transmission.
And you can also consider using a malware-scanning plugin to detect and remove any malicious code from your WordPress site.
WordPress is a popular CMS that attracts hackers, so it's important to understand the common security threats. These include XSS attacks, brute-force login attempts, database injections, backdoors, DoS attacks and phishing. To protect your website from potential threats you should use security plugins, limit login attempts and change passwords regularly.
So now that we've gone over how cyber attacks can happen, one effective way to keep your site secure is by using plugins specifically designed for this purpose.
Wordfence Security provides features such as firewall protection, malware scanning, login security, and real-time monitoring of traffic patterns on your website to keep your WordPress site secure.
And what's great about this plugin is that it also sends notifications when it detects any potential threats or vulnerabilities.
The Sucuri Security plugin comes with features like file integrity monitoring, remote malware scanning, blacklist monitoring, and post-hack actions to recover from a breach quickly.
iThemes Security Pro aims at protecting websites from common security issues while providing advanced, user-friendly options such as two-factor authentication (2FA), password expiration policies, reCAPTCHA integration on login forms, and more.
The All In One WP Security & Firewall plugin prioritizes User Account Protection, incorporates Login Lockdown against brute force attacks, and automatically blocks IP addresses. It also offers measures such as regular backups and altering the default table prefix to fortify your WordPress database and shield it from potential threats.
Jetpack Security is a comprehensive plugin that offers various features to protect your site from hacks and malware. It includes real-time backup, downtime monitoring, secure authentication with two-factor authentication (2FA), automatic updates for plugins/themes, and spam protection in comments and forms.
But, all in all, it's important to remember that no single plugin can guarantee complete security for your website. Because of that, they should not be seen as a sole source of protection.
It is essential to employ best practices in addition to plugins for optimal security of your WordPress website.
To enhance the security of your WordPress website, using plugins designed for this purpose is an effective way. Wordfence Security, Sucuri Security, iThemes Security Pro, All In One WP Security & Firewall and Jetpack Security are some of the best security plugins available that can help safeguard your site against malicious attacks. However, it's important to remember that no single plugin can guarantee complete security and combining multiple measures such as secure hosting provider and strong password policies along with installing recommended plugins is crucial.
And speaking of best practices, here are some guidelines to follow to significantly reduce the chances of your site being compromised.
This one is a no-brainer, but it has to be said...
For maximum security, a strong password should include at least 12 characters with an even mix of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols is a must.
Ensure you avoid using easily guessable information such as names or birthdates in your passwords.
Pro Tip: You can use online password generators to create complex passwords effortlessly.
To add an extra layer of protection to your login process, consider implementing two-factor authentication (2FA).
This method requires users to provide additional verification - typically through their mobile device - before they are granted access to the site's backend.
Pro Tip: Most popular WordPress plugins offer 2FA functionality, making it easy for you to implement this feature on your site.
An essential step in securing your WordPress website is limiting the number of failed login attempts allowed per user/IP address within a specific timeframe.
This practice helps prevent brute-force attacks by locking out potential hackers after several unsuccessful tries.
Pro Tip: Plugins like Limit Login Attempts Reloaded make it easy for you to set up these restrictions.
Something you might forget to do (especially as a busy business owner) is to review user roles and permissions on your WordPress site regularly.
Make sure you verify that each user has the correct access authorization and delete any accounts or users who are no longer in need of access to your website.
The WordPress software and plugins used with it are always evolving. It's very important to stay up-to-date on the latest WordPress core and plugin changes.
Here's a list of blogs to start with:
To enhance WordPress security, users should create strong passwords and implement two-factor authentication. Limiting login attempts and regularly updating user roles can also minimize potential risks. Staying informed about security updates through resources like the WordPress Official Blog, Wordfence Blog, and Sucuri Blog is crucial for maintaining a secure environment for your website.
Now that you know how to prevent a breach, what do you do if you've already had one?
If your WordPress website has been breached, it's crucial to act quickly and follow the right steps to recover from the attack and prevent further damage.
The first step is to assess how much damage has been done by analyzing which files have been affected or altered.
Your hosting provider may be able to help with restoring backups, blocking suspicious IP addresses, or providing additional security measures.
Ensure you inform them about the breach as soon as possible so they can assist you in resolving the issue.
To minimize the impact of future breaches, maintain regular backups of your website files and database.
Pro Tip: You can use monitoring tools like Google Search Console or Jetpack Activity Log to keep track of any suspicious activities on your site.
Taking these steps will help you recover from a breach quickly while minimizing damage and downtime for your WordPress website.
Do these sound too technical and complicated? Contact Synarcon and we can take care of these.
If your WordPress website has been breached, act quickly and follow the right steps to recover from the attack and prevent further damage. Assess how much damage has been done by analyzing which files have been affected or altered. Contact your hosting provider for assistance with restoring backups, blocking suspicious IP addresses, or providing additional security measures.
And that's it!
Just like securing your home and valuables, safeguarding your business with improved WordPress security is crucial. And neglecting it could jeopardize your hard-earned success.
Hackers are everywhere, and outdated software, weak passwords, and undertrained users can only make things worse. But don't worry, there are a whole host of plugins that can help level up your website security, along with some best practices to follow.
Proactivity pays off big time. With a little effort towards WordPress security, your business can safeguard its website from potential threats like a pro.