WordPress is one of the simplest, most popular and versatile content management systems available. It is best for beginners as anyone can quickly build a professional website with it. However, WordPress security is a very important aspect you need to keep in mind; everything from the plugins you choose to install, the themes you will install eventually and any other aspects that matter. Security is a very serious and ongoing process that you will always have to take care of. Here we will look at 10 ways in which you can easily enhance your WordPress security for a better experience.
Tip #1 Always use Two-Factor Authentication
This is the simplest and at the same time most effective measure that, you can take to improve the security of your WordPress website. Here, in addition to a password needed to log into your site, you will need to provide another verification step. This additional step often includes entering a specially generated code that you will receive via e-mail or SMS. This measure is most effective against brute force attacks. There are also, a number of plugins available to ease things up.
In order to set up your Two-Factor Authentication, first, open your WordPress website and then navigate to the “security” link. Here you should see the option for Two-Factor Authentication. You can then nominate your cell phone number to setup the process.
Tip #2 Implement Login Limits
This is also effective to counter brute force attacks, as you can limit the number of login attempts that users can make within a certain time-period on your website. With enough hit and trials, hackers are bound to breach your site’s security at one point and access your data. By limiting the login limits to your website, you can stop them from trying the first place.
Adding login limits is not a very difficult thing to do; on the contrary, it’s quite simple. Here again, there are a number of plugins that can take care of this. Some plugins add on extra security features that help keep your login page safe from these intruders. However, keep in mind to choose the appropriate plugin for your WordPress website that suits your needs.
Tip #3 Disable Login Hints
This is a golden egg for hackers. Whenever you type in a wrong or non-existent password on your WordPress login page, you will get a hint telling you that either your username is wrong or the password you typed does not match with the specific username. That is all the more reason why you should disable it. You can simply do it with a script within your functions.php file.
Tip #4 Never use “Admin” as your administrator username
The most commonly used username for WordPress administrator users is without any doubt, “Admin”. Everyone including the hackers knows this. Thus you need to change it to something else; preferably containing capital letters. In case you already have a WordPress website, you can:
- Create a new user containing admin rights;
- Assign all your blogs and posts to the new user, in case your old “admin” one was the only user;
- Delete the old user from your WordPress account.
This is bound to give the hackers a hard time to find and hack your website. However, only this is not enough. We will continue to see what other steps you can take to secure your WordPress website.
Tip #5 Make sure you pick a strong password
This is always important. Make sure to create a strong password that has the following characteristics:
- Firstly, it must be at least 15-bit or 15 characters long;
- Contain at least one capital letter;
- Contain numbers and symbols.
There are services that can help you generate strong passwords like strongpasswordgenerator.com and others.
Tip #6 Change your admin Login URL
Make sure to change your admin login page URL to some different value from its default one. This is but a simple measure to further secure your WordPress website. This helps to counter the majority of the automated brute force attacks on your website. You can download a plugin to perform the task, as it is a bit tricky. After downloading the plugin “WPS Hide Login”, go to the settings option to configure it and set up your login URL.
Tip #7 Switch to HTTPS
Sometimes when an attacker intercepts a message sent between two parties, there is a chance of a man-in-the-middle attack on your website. In such cases, often none of the parties is aware that their data has been snatched. If you switch to HTTPS, by using SSL certificates, you can keep your traffic secure. The difficulty of the switching process depends on your host. Some hosts can automate the process whereas others require you to do it manually.
Tip #8 Disable all trackbacks
Hackers can cause a DOS attack (denial-of-service) via trackbacks or pingbacks. For new WordPress sites, it is important to disable this feature. In order to do so go to Settings and then to Discussion, and there uncheck the “Allow link notifications from other blogs (pingbacks and trackbacks)” option.
Tip #9 Backup your data regularly
There counts nothing like an all secure website. However, following proper backup procedures and creating copies of your data regularly can help you keep track of your data so that you don’t have to worry about losing them. If the server is infected with malware immediately, try to remove it from there. In such cases, a backup comes in handy. Most WordPress hosts provide a backup service that will automatically back up your data on a daily basis. If however, you want to manually backup the site, the best way would be to backup your entire WordPress directory.
Tip #10 Always keep everything updated
It is absolutely vital that you keep the WordPress site and any related plugins that you have installed, updated at all the time. With the most current version, it is less likely for a security breach to occur. You can also set it up such that it will automatically download and apply every update that comes out. However, this is only the major ones; the smaller updates will have to be done manually. In order to do so, you can navigate through your WordPress dashboard and find the Update option, where you can perform these updates manually.
Securing your website is an ongoing and never-ending process. It must always be on the top of your to-do list. Hope the tips above can help you do so.