WordPress started as a free, easy to use, open source blogging platform. It was first…
How to Make Your WordPress Website More Secure
As the most used content management system, WordPress is a popular target for hackers. According to a recent survey, over 111,000 WordPress websites are hacked every day. You don’t want your website to be one of them.
Your website is your online headquarters, and first impressions last even in the digital space. Users need to feel confident when accessing your website and giving you information. Without that confidence, you’ll fail to find online success.
In today’s blog post, we’re going to discuss several ways to make your WordPress website more secure. You can accomplish most of these steps without professional assistance.
Let’s get started.
Customise user roles and capabilities.
WordPress has an excellent feature that allows you to limit what users can and can’t do on your website. For example, one user can only view posts while another can write and edit them. Minimal damage can be done when a user’s login information is compromised, because they have limited user capabilities.
The six WordPress user roles include the following.
- Super Admin – This user has complete access to all the websites in a network.
- Admin – This user has complete access to a single website.
- Editor – This is a user who can manage the posts of other users.
- Author – This is a user who can manage his posts.
- Contributor – This is a user who can submit but not manage posts.
- Subscriber – This is a user who only has access to his profile.
Let’s say your website accepts guest posts. You can create contributor profiles for the people who’d like to write blog posts for you. These users can then submit posts, but they won’t have the ability to publish them.
Limit login attempts.
Since WordPress automatically lets users log into a website as many times as possible, some malicious users may try guessing your password. They could use tools that come up with all sorts of password combinations.
Limiting login attempts could prevent these malicious users from gaining access to your website. Users can no longer login in after a specific number of attempts. Afterwards, they will need to wait until some time elapses before they can attempt to log in again. You can fully customise the number of attempts.
Both plugins remember a user’s IP address. Once the user exceeds the number of allowed login attempts, the plugin blocks their IP address for 15 minutes or even up to 24 hours. The length of time required before they can log in again is up to you.
Once you’ve installed your plugin of choice, go to your WordPress dashboard. Click on Settings and select the plugin. You can then see several options that will let you customise your user login settings.
Install security plugins.
WordPress has thousands of plugins. No matter the function you’re looking for, you’ll surely find a plugin for it. You may want to choose different security plugins depending on your website’s specific needs.
Sucuri Security is one such example. It strengthens your website’s security and monitors your status, notifying you when a possible issue occurs. This plugin has both free and paid versions. If your website contains sensitive user information, you might consider investing in the paid version.
iTheme Security is another popular WordPress security plugin. It secures your website in more than 30 ways, including scheduled malware scans and regularly generating strong passwords. Like the Sucuri Security plugin, it has both free and paid versions.
The plugin Security Ninja has been around for almost a decade. It runs over 50 security tests to determine possible security issues in a snap. It also has a vulnerability scanner that lets you know when one of your plugins could be a security risk.
These are only three examples of WordPress security plugins. You can choose from thousands of plugins depending on your website’s needs and budget.
Use two-factor authentication.
Two-factor authentication is a security process where users are asked to verify their account through two different methods. It ensures that malicious users cannot access your account, even after getting your password.
For example, Google often requires two-factor authentication whenever you log into your account from a new device. After you enter your password, it often sends a verification code to a phone number associated with the account.
With the help of plugins, you can also utilise two-factor authentication whenever a user attempts to log into your WordPress website.
Google Authenticator is one such plugin. It lets you use the Google Authenticator app, LastPass, QR codes, push notifications, and more to ensure only authorised users get access to your site and monitors all user logins.
The plugin has both free and paid versions. If your website has only up to three users, the free version should be fine.
Since WordPress is the most popular content management system, many malicious users attempt to attack websites using it.
Protecting your website from malicious users should be one of your top priorities. A secure website shows users that their information is safe with you, building trust and establishing you as an authority in your field.
Cornerstone Digital is a web development company in Sydney. We’d be glad to talk to you about making your WordPress website more secure. Call us on (02) 8211 0668 or email us at [email protected]
A self-professed book and digital marketing nerd, Darlyn Herradura focuses on building trust between customers and businesses with the written word. She understands that creating valuable content is the best way to get found online and happily spends her time doing that.