Since you are planning to build a site with WordPress, you have to pay more attention to the security issues for some reasons. Many website owners use to complain about the security of their WordPress sites. It has been a must topic to discuss as there are millions of websites built with this popular Content Management System for its easy-to-use functionality. Now, the question is- How to secure WordPress website from hackers? Well! Today, we plan to present you step by step WordPress security guide that may help you to reduce the risk of being hacked. Hope, it will help you to increase the security level of your beloved site.
Step by Step WordPress Security Guide
Do you know the percentage of using WordPress? It’s over 33 percent of the entire internet! I hope you got the points to be aware of the security issues. So, we are going to provide you a simple but crucial WordPress security checklist to increase your site security. Let’s move to the track!
1. Use A Reliable Hosting
Hosting is always essential to ensure the security of a site. Many owners try to pick a cheap hosting plan rather than thinking of internet threats. You should choose the hosting providers who keep their server software and hardware updated. A good hosting provider should have the feature of SSL certificate, which is essential. It secures the connection between the website and visitors. Many of the hosting providers offer free SSL certificate. Some of the popular companies that provide secure hosting plans are SiteGround, Bluehost, HostGator, etc.
We recommend SiteGround
2. Be Sensitive In Using Password
Password is always a sensitive and one of the vital WordPress security issues, whether you are using a WordPress site. Don’t use the simple and common password like most of the users. At first, try to make it longer to at least 10 characters. Why? If you choose a 6 or 8 digit character password, it becomes easy to break by the hackers. Then, try the next tip. Make it unique which will differentiate you from others. Another crucial trick is to mix it up with special characters, numbers. You can also mix it up with uppercase and lowercase letters to make your password more secure. Many users are using a password generator to make the process simple. You can also try this.
3. Keep WordPress Files Updated
It’s another necessary step to keep your WordPress site secure. How will you do that? Well! WordPress installs some minor updates automatically. But the other significant files should be updated in time. Always update the theme and plugins from the official website. One thing to remember you, don’t even try to use nulled or cracked version of any file. Many users do this to save a little penny and get affected by hackers easily.
4. Change Admin Username and Login URL
You will get a common username and login URL when you install WordPress for the first time to your server. So, it’s not a difficult term to try hacking your site through these ways. Many new users use to ask if it is possible to change it! Some of them don’t even try to make it change. Use a unique username and delete the previous one. Make sure you update the username from phpMyAdmin. To change the login URL, you can use any popular plugin from the WordPress repository. It will decrease the chance to be affected by the spammers.
5. Limit Login Attempts
Normally, WordPress doesn’t block users for attempting many times to login. You have to do it by yourself either manually or with the help of a plugin. It will let you know when someone tries force attempts to enter your dashboard. You will be notified of this unauthorized activity by the time.
Our Recommend Plugin Limit Login Attempts Reloaded by WPChef
6. Add Security Questions
Maybe you have already heard about this. You don’t have to be a WordPress security expert to add security questions on your login page. It will act like an additional password which will ensure WordPress login security. You may use a plugin for that. It will make the way harder for hackers to get unauthorized access.
Our Recommended Plugin: WP Security Questions
7. Backup Your Site Regularly
What if something happens, which causes the loss of your website database? As a smart webmaster, you have to keep a backup of your site regularly. It may need for several reasons. The data can be crashed if your updates go wrong, or viruses and malware hit your system. It’s also crucial to resolve malware infections and protect against hackers. So, don’t ignore to backup your valuable site regularly.
Our Recommended plugin: Backup & Staging – BlogVault Backups By Backup by BlogVault
8. Use Security Plugins
After completing the full setup of your WP files, you need to add a monitoring system to keep track on your site. A system which will allow you to monitor the force login attempts, and malware scanning. It will monitor DNS changes, block malicious networks, and generate strong passwords for your site.
Many beginners can think- Do I need WordPress security plugins for that? No doubt, using security plugins is a good practice for both newbies and professionals as well. You have to find out the best one. Some of the most popular plugins are WordFence Security, Securi Security, iThemes Security etc. You will get the facility like all in one security by using any of them.
Our Recommended Plugins:
9. Use Two-Factor Authentication
Two-factor authentication technique is another security measure for WordPress sites. Typically, we do log in to our website dashboard using username and password. But this method requires another device or app to authenticate your access, which provides another level of protection. In this case, you will always get a security code to your phone when you attempt to log in. You can use a popular two-factor authentication plugin for that. Remember that, this is one of the most essential parts of our WordPress security guide.
10. Disallow File Editing
If you give access to any user of your site, make sure to disallow the file editing option. By this, nobody will be able to edit or modify the existing file. Just make a simple change to the wp-config.php file to do this. Here is the line below:
define (‘DISALLOW_FILE_EDIT’, true);
11. Use SSL To Encrypt Data
To ensure secure data transfer between user browsers and servers, it’s necessary to use an SSL (Secure Socket Layer). This is like a safeguard from the hackers who try to breach the connection. It is also one of the important Google ranking factors as well. You can get the SSL certification free from most of the hosting providers. Another option is to get the service from a third party company.
12. Change The WordPress Database Table Prefix
If you just installed the WordPress file, then you can see the database table prefix as wp-. You should change the default name to a unique one. It helps to get rid of the unauthorized injections to the database of your site. There are a few plugins to do this task if you are not familiar enough with the manual process.
13. Set Strong Passwords For Your Database
Most of the beginner level WordPress users use the common password to remember for the database. It’s not an ideal way to keep your site safe. Always keep a strong password for your database so that hackers don’t get the clue to break this. You can use any random password generator if you don’t have enough time to do this manually.
14. Protect The wp-config.php File
wp-config.php is the most important file in the root directory of your site. Hackers always try to take control over it. We suggest changing the root directory of this file to another folder. You can put it to a higher level than the present directory and WordPress doesn’t make any hassle for this.
15. Set Directory Permissions Carefully
It is essential to set directory permissions carefully to secure your WordPress site. Do it either manually or by a simple plugin. You can set the directory permissions ‘755’ or ‘750’ and files to ‘644’ or 640. If you are working on a shared hosting plan, you have to be more careful with this.
Well! We have reached the finishing point of our discussion. As you see, we mentioned several ways in this WordPress security guide to protect your site. Some of the outputs can be gained with the help of WordPress plugins, and some can be done manually. If you are good enough to work as an experienced WordPress developer, then it’s better to do it manually. Otherwise, use plugins rather than hampering your site. Hopefully, the guidelines will help you in several ways. Do you have any other WordPress security tips to get rid of the regular threats? Feel free to share your thoughts.