The case of websites worrying about their security is a common norm. The belief is that an open source script is insecure to all sorts of attacks. But that is the half-truth. And you should not blame WordPress for any vulnerability.
Reason? Because it’s up to you to secure your site. There are some issues you have to take care of as a website owner. But the question is, what are the actions you are taking to secure your website from either stopping the hacker or stop the vulnerability?
Let’s find out some simple tricks to help you secure your WordPress website:
Step 1: Secure the login page and prevent brute force attacks
Almost all of us are aware of the standard WordPress login page URL. The backend and the dashboard of the website are managed through this page.
Just put /wp-login.php or /wp-admin/ at the end of your domain name and you are ready to go through.
We are recommending you to modify the login page URL and even the page’s interaction.
That should be the first step you should follow before securing your website.
1) Set up website lockdown and ban users
A lockdown option or failed login attempts can rectify a lot of errors. For instance, whenever there is a repetitive login attempt with wrong passwords, the website gets locked, and you get notified of this unauthorized activity.
And in these conditions, iThemes Security Plugin is the best plugin available. You can set a particular number of failed login attempts after which the plugin blocks the attacker’s IP address.
2) Use 2-factor authentication
Implementing the 2-factor authentication (2FA) on the login page is another good security function. In this case, the user gives login details for two different sections. And what those two are to be decided by the website owner. It can be a normal password followed by a secret question, a set of characters, a secret code, etc.
We preferably take a secret code while implementing 2FA on all of our websites. The Google Authenticator plugin assists us with that in just a few clicks.
To test it, just sign out of your site and sign in again, but this time use the email address you used at the time of creating the account.
3) Use email as login
In general, you have to put your username to sign in. Inputting an email ID rather than a username is a better approach. The logic is quite simple. Usernames are easy to be guessed, while email IDs are difficult. Mostly, any WordPress user account is created with a unique email id, making it a valid identifier for signing in.
The WP Email Login plugin works out of the box for this purpose. It starts working right after the implementation and it requires no configuration at all.
4) Rename your login URL
To change the login URL is a simple activity. As a matter of course, the WordPress login page can be accessed effortlessly through wp-login.php or wp-admin added to the site’s principal URL.
At the point when hackers learn the immediate URL of your login page, they can impregnate their way in. They attempt to sign in with their GWDb (Guess Work Database, i.e. a database of speculated usernames and passwords; e.g. username: administrator and secret word: p@ssword … with many such combinations).
Now, if you’ve been pursuing this way, we have officially confined the user login attempts and swapped usernames for email IDs. Presently, we can supplant the login URL and restrict 99% of direct hacking attacks.
This short trick limits an unapproved authority from getting to the login page. Just somebody with the correct URL can do it. Once more, the iThemes Security module can enable you to change your login URLs. Ie:
Change wp-login.php to something remarkable; e.g. my_new_login
Change/wp-administrator/to something remarkable; e.g. my_new_admin
Change/wp-login.php?action=register to something; e.g. my new registration
5) Adjust your passwords
Play around with the site’s passwords and change them consistently. Enhance their quality by including capitalized and lowercase letters, numbers, and uncommon characters.
LastPass is one of the most effortless approaches to get over your passwords. It’ll produce safe passwords for you as well as store them inside a browser add-on, which will spare you from remembering them.
Step 2: Secure your admin dashboard
For a cyberpunk, the best part for manipulation is the administrator dashboard, which truly enjoys the highest level of protection. Hence, attacking the most secured part is challenging, and if that can be manipulated, the hacker earns the moral victory and leads to further damage.
Followings things should be taken care of:
6) Protect the wp-admin directory
The wp-administrator index is the core of any WordPress site. Consequently, if this piece of your site gets compromised then the whole site can get harmed.
One great approach to keep this secure is to password protect the wp-admin directory. With such safety effort, the site owner may get to the dashboard by submitting two passwords. One ensures the login page, and the other the WordPress admin domain. If the site visitors are required to gain admittance to some specific parts of the wp-administrator, you may free those parts while restricting the rest.
7) Use SSL to encrypt data
Activating an SSL (Secure Socket Layer) certificate is one shrewd move to secure the admin board. SSL guarantees secure information exchange between user browsers and the server, making it troublesome for cyberpunks to manipulate the security or spoof your info.
Getting an SSL authentication for your WordPress site isn’t difficult. You can buy one from some respective organizations or can request your hosting firm to attach your site with one (it’s frequently a choice with their hosting bundles).
8) Add user accounts with care
If you maintain a WordPress blog, or rather a multi-author- blog, at that point you have to manage different individuals accessing to your admin dashboard. This could make your site more powerless against security breaches.
Plugins like Force Strong Passwords can be used for your audience, ensuring that all the passwords they utilize are secure. This is only a prudent step.
9) Change the admin username
Amid WordPress, setup, you ought to never pick “admin” as the username for your fundamental administrator account. Such an easy to remember username is accessible for hackers. All they have to know is the secret key, and your whole site gets into the wrong hands.
We can’t disclose to you how often we have looked through our site logs and discovered login endeavors with username “admin”.
The iThemes Security plugin can stop such endeavors cunningly by quickly restricting any IP address that endeavors to sign in with that username.
10) Monitor your files
If you want to implement some extra security layers, the changes to the site’s files can be tracked through plugins like iThemes Security and Wordfence.
Step 3: Secure the database
100% of your website’s info and data is stored on the server. It’s important to look after them. Following are the things you can implement to secure your website.
11) Change the WordPress database table prefix
If you have set up WordPress then you know about the wp-table prefix that is utilized by the WP database. We prescribe you change it to something exceptional.
Utilizing the default prefix makes your site database inclined to SQL injection attack. Such assault can be counteracted by altering wp-to some other term, e.g. you can form it like wpnew-, mywp-, etc.
12) Back up your site regularly
With the fast changing technology and search engine algorithm, there will always be holes to be filled. But the best thing we can advise is to keep an off-site backup.
If your data or user Ids ever gets compromised, you can always recover and put your site into a working state again. In that case, there are tons of plugins to assist you. Some of them are Updraftplus, VaultPress, and Backup Buddy etc.
13) Set strong passwords for your database
A solid secret key for the primary database user is an absolute necessity – the one WordPress uses to get to the database.
As usual, utilize capitalized, lowercase, numbers, and unique symbols for the password. Again We suggest LastPass as a helpful asset.
Step 4: Secure your hosting setup
Perhaps all the hosting companies provide an easy and optimized environment for WordPress. But we can go a step ahead.
14) Protect the wp-config.php file
The wp-config.php document holds critical data about your WordPress set up, and it’s in certainty the most essential record in your site’s root index. Protecting it means securing the core of your WordPress blog.
It gets complicated for cyberpunks to break the security of your site if the wp-config.php file becomes unavailable to them.
15) Disallow file editing
In the event of a user having an admin access to your WordPress dashboard, they can alter any records that are part of your WordPress set up. This incorporates all themes and plugins.
Be that as it may if you restrict the editing, regardless of whether a hacker acquires admin access to your WordPress dashboard, they still won’t have the capacity to alter any data.
Attach the following to the wp-config.php record (at the simple end):
16) Connect the server correctly
When setting up your site, link the server just through SFTP or SSH. SFTP is constantly favored over the customary FTP on account of its security features that are, obviously, not credited with FTP.
Linking the server along these lines guarantees secure transfers of all data. Numerous hosting firms offer this service as a feature of their package. It can be done manually (simply Google for instructions; there’s a many stuff out there).
17) Set directory permissions carefully
Wrong directory authorizations can be lethal, particularly in case you’re working in a shared hosting condition.
In such a case, changing documents and directory authorizations is a decent move to secure the site at the hosting level. Setting the directory authorizations to “755” and documents to “644” secures the entire filesystem – individual records, directories, and subdirectories.
This should be possible either manually by means of the File Manager inside your hosting panel, or through the terminal (associated with SSH) – utilize the “chmod” order.
Additionally, you can read about right authorization plan of WordPress or introduce the iThemes Security plugin to check your present permission settings.
18) Disable directory listing with .htaccess
If you make another directory as a feature of your site and don’t put an index.html record in it, you might be shocked to find that your audience can get a full directory posting of everything that is in that directory.
For instance, if you make a directory called “information”, you can check everything in that directory basically by writing http://www.example.com/information/in your program. No password or anything is required.
You can restrict this by attaching the following line of code in your .htaccess document:
Choices All – Indexes
Step 5: Secure your WordPress themes and plugins
Themes and plugins are fundamental elements of any WordPress site. Tragically, they can pose genuine security dangers. Let’s see how we can restrict WordPress themes and plugins the correct way:
19) Update Regularly
A Good and Quality software is supported by its developers and gets updated every now and then. But in the case of WordPress, it gets updated very frequently. It is because the updates are meant to fix the issues and bugs that the website faces. Moreover, it is meant to fix the crucial security patches. Hackers will very happily hack your website if they see a single loophole. Updating your WordPress means making the work of the hackers very difficult. So, update the plugins and the themes in WordPress whenever there is one available.
20) Remove your WordPress version number
The current WordPress version can be found quite easily. It is present in the site’s source view and the hackers know that which version of WordPress we use. And it would be like a child’s play for them to build up the perfect hacking strategy.
So, it is very much recommended that to hide the Version of the WordPress, we use a variety of Security plugins available.
If you have just started then you have already got a lot to take in. All the points that we have discussed in this article will definitely help you in securing your site. The higher your security standards are the more difficult it gets for a hacker to manipulate.