When your WordPress website is your business’ bread and butter, the very source of your livelihood, then without a doubt, its security and wellbeing has to be on top of your priority list. How do I know this? Because I’ve been earning my meals off my WordPress site for the last 8 Years! And over this period of time I have tasted the bitterness of website downtime and losses because of security attacks. Which is why, this post will take you through a few essentials on how to keep your WordPress site safe.
The thing about WordPress and why security becomes a huge deal is that, although the core software is pretty stable, it’s augmented regularly by hundreds of developers and with the massive plugin community opening up so many options, things can go horribly wrong with one single install or one open vulnerability. We are here to avoid that with this post, so let’s dive right in!
- Keep WordPress Updated: As you might already know, WordPress is an OpenSource platform and it is regularly updated by a community of developers. Although WordPress automatically installs smaller updates, the major ones are what you need to keep a watch on and update as and when available. Why is this important? Because many of these updates include major security fixes. The hackers are working really hard to find ways in, and the WordPress community tries really hard to find fixes to their malevolent tricks. It could get a bit difficult to monitor updates and I have faced this problem in the past. As I was focusing on the business, the WordPress maintenance got swept under the carpet. A great solution for this is to opt for WordPress Hosting. Yes, a special website hosting for WordPress based websites. One primary advantage of WordPress Hosting is that they, by default take care of keeping WordPress updated without you having to look into the matter.
- Limit Login Attempts: Ever heard of brute force attacks? It basically means the attacker can try repetitively to break into your system. This kind of attack is really easy to attempt on website logins especially when there is no limit to login attempts. WordPress by default allows unlimited login attempts, but you can easily change that by implementing security plugins like Login Lockdown.
- Disable PHP File Execution in Certain WordPress Directories: Your WordPress website contains Writable folders like ‘Uploads’. Here by default, users can upload images and videos on your website. Although this is used for good while installing new themes etc. it also leaves open a huge door for hackers to run malicious PHP codes and remotely hack into your website or disrupt the website working. It would be best if you disable all PHP codes on Upload-able directories including ‘/wp-content/uploads/’
- Take Periodic Backups: Yes, I know, it’s a no brainer. But just because something is obvious does not mean it is not neglected. There have been countless times when people have faced nasty consequences of not having regular and comprehensive website backups. Sure, you can use plugins like VaultPress and BackupBuddy but I prefer using the more old school method instead of relying on plugins. This problem again, is solved is you host your website on a WordPress Hosting plan. Although it is always necessary to have your own backup plan and protocol in place, good WordPress Hosting providers provide automatic backups for your WordPress website as frequently as every week. That again means one less thing to worry about thanks to your WordPress Hosting Provider.
To be honest, the amount of security precautions that you take up for your WordPress website’s security is never enough but in my personal experience, moving to a specialized WordPress Hosting plan is a good starting point. They take up a huge chunk of responsibility in terms of security and you can focus on your website and business. I really hope this post helps and please share your thoughts and questions in the comments section below!