9 WordPress Website Security Tips from WordPress Security Experts

The best practices for formidable WordPress website security

Launched in 2003, WordPress has become the largest content management system (CMS) in the world. Statistics show that almost 30% of the internet is driven by WordPress. Therefore, its popularity alone is enough to grab the attention of cyber attackers. As you already know, WordPress is an open source script, thereby an easy target for online perpetrators. Keeping these things in mind, it is vital not to take WordPress website security lightly.

WordPress is a secure platform, embraced by millions of websites worldwide. However, it doesn’t mean that your job as the WordPress site admin is over. Instead, it’s just getting started. More than 70% of the top 1 million WordPress sites were found to be vulnerable in 2013. As a result, instances of brute-force attacks and botnet attacks are familiar territory for WordPress websites. Here are 9 of the best WordPress security practices suggested by our WordPress security experts to protect your WordPress site from such attacks.

1. Have you got “admin” or “administrator” as your username? Change it ASAP

As per the opinions of our experts, the login page of a WordPress site is one of its most vulnerable parts. By employing brute-force attacks, attackers try different combinations of username and password in hope to get access to the website. So, if you have got “admin” or “administrator” as your username (just like millions of people around the world have), half of the attacker’s job is already done. Now, all he (or she) needs is the password to gain control of the site.

Go to Users > New User and create a new user. Enable this user with the Administrator Rights. Now simply delete the old admin user. Simple, isn’t it?

2. Employ stronger passwords

Having a short, simple, commonly used password quite literally gives an open invitation to trouble. We suggest using at least a 15-character long password that includes numbers, special characters, and alphabets. There are tons of password generating tools available on the internet. If you can’t think of any, these tools can be handy to you.

Moreover, we recommend creating a strong password policy for all employees. This policy should involve making long, unpredictable passwords.

3. Use two-factor authentication

No matter how strong your password is, the security of your WordPress site might still be at risk. Therefore, a terrific way to shield your WordPress website against brute-force attacks is incorporating two-factor authentication.

As the name suggests, this involves two layers of authentication. In this method, a code is sent to user’s mobile phone or email address once the password is entered. No matter how big of a database of username & passwords the hacker has, he/she cannot get through two-factor authentication.

4. Keep everything up-to-date

Updates exist for a reason. They are provided by the developers to fix any of the bugs present in the last script. Outdated elements are the most common way the WordPress website security is compromised. According to a study, 54% of WordPress security susceptibilities are the result of outdated plugins. Therefore, whenever you see that orange notification indication for an available update, do it right away.

You can also implement automatic updates for WordPress, and its plugins and themes by implanting the following codes in the wp-config.php file:

For WordPress: define( 'WP_AUTO_UPDATE_CORE', true );
For Plugins: add_filter( 'auto_update_plugin', '__return_true' );
For Themes: add_filter( 'auto_update_theme', '__return_true' );

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