Securing a website can be very challenging. New hacking tricks are invented all the time, so you must create constant reinforcement to your WordPress site. To avoid unwanted security breaches that can seriously harm your site, you must pay attention to all details necessary to improve its security. There are many WordPress security practices which most dangerous to neglect and in this post, I am going to share all those practices.
Even if you don’t feel like you need to go to extreme measures to ensure the ultimate site security, you should at least learn some of the essentials. A single plugin cannot and will not keep your site safe.
Security is a serious matter and the success of your website depends on it. To avoid becoming one of all those vulnerable sites online, take a look at these commonly neglected security practices.
Before your WordPress website get hacked or you how secure WordPress is? You must Start Practicing these below tips and tricks.
Reduce the Use of Plugins
Delete all themes and plugins you are not using at the moment to keep the site more secure. ‘Look at this as cleaning out your closet – if there is a plugin you haven’t used for months, it is time to toss it aside’ – recommends Zack Fredon, content writer at AussieWritings.com dissertation service.
Reducing the number of themes and plugins is not only beneficial for keeping the site safer. This will help you improve the performance and speed of the site. Too many themes and plugins can drastically slow down a site.
This also means that you should try to create a must-have plugin list to avoid having too many plugins in the future. If you are downloading all those premium plugins that come free of charge, it is time to stop this. Downloading things simply to cut down on a site’s budget is a bad idea.
As a matter of fact, the free versions of plugins found online can often contain some malicious code.
Download Your Themes from a Well-Known Source
Of course, you cannot delete all plugins and themes. But, what you can do is make sure that those you download are free from malicious code. Whenever you can, download your themes and plugins from the official site of WordPress. You can even go with a reputable source such as Solostream but never stray from reliable developers.
Get the Updated WordPress Version
WordPress is constantly improving to avoid hacking and security breaches, so get the updates regularly. Hackers know the flaws in previous versions, which is why the new versions are created in the first place.
To save some time, you may even want to consider choosing the option for automatic updates.
Do the Same for Plugins and Themes
Automate every update – starting from the WordPress version to the themes and plugins you are using. Typically, people choose to update these manually, but you can surely go for automated updates if you cannot do the maintenance on regular basis.
Disable PHP Error Reports
This probably sounds very strange, but many decide to eliminate the reporting to keep the website safer. Such reports serve to inform you if a theme or plugin is working incorrectly, which is great. But, hackers can actually see the error reports and use these to get to the server path. Basically, you are giving them the ultimate weapon to destroy your site on a silver platter.
Error reporting is very helpful, but the risks exceed the advantages it offers. Sometimes it is best to disable it altogether.
Check All Dashboard Activity
This is especially recommended to those who have a big number of users on the website. You should always keep track of what everyone’s doing on the site and can do this on the dashboard. Once you detect some wrongdoing, you can intervene before a security breach happens.
There are plugins that can help you keep track of what users do, such as the WP Security Audit Log.
Change the Password Often
It is no longer enough to create a strong password. In addition to making your password a random string of numbers, letters and symbols, make sure to change it often.
You can even use a password generator to get the thing done if you cannot come up with new passwords all the time.
Install a Firewall
This is extremely easy to do, and it is important for your security – both for the computer and your site. Once you install a firewall on your PC, you’ll have one more layer of protection against security breaches and hackers.
If you are wondering which one to choose, check Norton Internet Security and ZoneAlarm Free Firewall.
Use .htaccess to Protect the File
Many haven’t even heard of the .htaccess file, even if they are really into the security of their WordPress site. Still, even if you haven’t heard of it, you have surely accessed it. The changes you have made to this file can really affect the security of your site, so you must protect them at all cost.
The .htaccess file is right at the heart of your website. When you use it, it affects the ways your website structures the permalinks, as well as how it will handle the security.
Source some snippets from the WordPress Codex, and insert them into the file. You can modify the files within the directory, anywhere outside #begin WordPress and #end WordPress.
Keep the Computer Updated
WordPress users often focus so much on securing the site on the platform, they forget about their own computers. Hackers can use the vulnerabilities of the computer to access your site, so make sure to keep the computer updated at all times.
Of course, you should always use reliable anti-virus software to avoid such things from happening, too.
Backup the Site
Not just occasionally, but very often. Backup the site schedule to avoid procrastination. You can set scheduled backups as part of your security strategy and make sure that your site will be able to restore if compromised.
If someone breaches your security, the backup will allow you to restore the last version prior to the damage made. Fortunately, there are many automated solutions for this, such as WordPress Backup to Dropbox or VaultPress.
Hide the Usernames
It is much easier than you think to find the username of an author on a WordPress site. If you leave the defaults intact, hackers will have free access to your username. In most cases, the username is of the admin, so once they get this information, they can compromise your website.
DreamHost believes that the best solution to this problem is to hide the username. This is a measure you can take to make the job of a hacker harder, so it is definitely a good idea.
To do this, you need a code added to the site. When you add the code, hackers won’t be able to get the admin’s information, and will instead be sent to the homepage.
Making sure that your WordPress site is secure demands more than downloading one plugin and letting it do its job. Hackers find new ways to trick the system every single day, and you must keep track with the latest security measures. In order to achieve complete security for your website, you must secure every aspect and the secret entrance to it. And most importantly, you should backup your website in case something like this happens.