Protecting your WordPress site can be quite a task as you should know how you are supposed to do it. All-around protection is required at the start but while doing so, you can be sure that you are not locking out all your readers. When it comes to WordPress site protection, many of us don’t have the idea where to start as we generally think that protecting WordPress is as easy as running WordPress, but it’s not.
The fact is, you don’t need to be a tech guru when it comes to protecting your WordPress site. By following a few steps and going through some features of the WP security, you can easily manage WordPress security. Here are the few methods that will help you to nail the security:
Protection With One Click
The basic and the simplest way to put a WordPress protection are to work with a single click. This protects the site without any setup and complications. You just have to use one click and it provides you with pretty slick security.
To start, you have to install a WordPress security plug-in from add new page. As the plug-in is free, you can directly find it from the search tab. All you have to do is then install it and activate the plug-in. once you activate the plug-in, you can make the database backup. Here is what a one-click plug-in provides you:
- The non-admins now cannot see your updates.
- The default admin username is removed.
- The login page is now protected with the force attacks which are quite a threat recently.
- The site now automatically blocks those attackers who scan your site looking for vulnerabilities.
Change Of The Admin Username
As WordPress is quite popular it makes it the first target for hackers. On average, 20% f the internet now is powered by WordPress, which makes it in the eye of hackers. Like the basic protection we all know, WordPress is protected with a username and a password, the two things any hacker needs to know if he wants to get his hands on to your website.
The default username of WordPress is admin and every bloke on the internet that knows a thing or two about the WordPress knows this. It is quite necessary that you change the username from admin to something more secure. Make sure that your WordPress is not having the default username.
With a username secured, you need to come up with a password that is both unique and uncommon that makes it a tough task for the hacker to even guess it. This might be the entry-level stuff when it comes to WordPress but this is the most basic way of protection and in most cases, people tend to ignore this part and this becomes the major cause of their sites getting hacked.
Security With Away Mode
This works the same way as you lock your house before you leave for someplace. The away mode in WordPress allows you the disable the backend of your site, making it safer against hackers. This works as locking down your site when you don’t use it, like suppose if you don’t use your WordPress site overnight, then you can lock it down for that particular time period.
However the away mode has a downside, that is, the moment you lock your site from the hackers, you also lock it down from yourself. The security system works in a way of locking the site completely, rendering it no use for user and hackers both. With away mode, you have to set the times as there are no exceptions.
With away mode set a time limit prior to logging off, as it makes you also restricted from using the site, make sure that your logging and activating the away mode are carefully timed as you don’t want to end up finding yourself unable to use the site for the predefined time period that is been defined by the away mode. If you want the protection with user-friendly ability then define a lockout mode with a time of an hour or two when the WordPress site is not locked down. This will allow you to use it without waiting down.
Understand that there is a fine line of difference between WordPress security and WordPress usability. Don’t define an away mode that renders you useless to your own site. This can be one of those moments that can make security trump usability. Make sure that you make use of it in the perfect way.
Banning The Users
There is no use encouraging all the people of the world to be the user of your site. As in the real world, we cannot cross-check the user on the terms of criminal background or any other record per se. if someone has a record of being a hacker, then you have to keep an eye on him on the activities.
The same level of working goes for WordPress. The WordPress security lets you ban and filter the users and you can control the specific users that can visit your site. You can also completely ban some users and then they won’t be able to visit your site. This makes your site less vulnerable to people who have a hacking or bad background and thus it protects you from future threats that may arise over time. The plug-in gives you a blacklist that is been recognized by the industry and that lets you create your own list of blackout people who no longer get access to your site.
We all know that how trained the hackers are. Blocking out the user lets only the blocking of IPs and the hackers can visit your site using a different IP other than the one you have blacklisted. But there are many lazy hackers out there who keep on using the blacklisted IPs and this gives you protection from them.
Change the Content Directory
The internet is full of intelligent hackers and they never leave any stone unturned when it comes to hacking. They are constantly on the lookout for a weak spot in your WordPress site and they scan your content directory for any plug-in that you might have left for the susceptible files.
The simple solution for this problem is to change the default name of the directories. WordPress comes with a specific set of directories that have a default name. With the help of better WordPress security, you can change the name of the directories with a simple click. However, this comes with a restriction as it only works with new sites. If you try to change the names of the directory on an existing site, then the links of the content you have uploaded will break and the users won’t be able to see the content you have uploaded in them. Changing the name of the directory is a good safety measure for the new sites but not for the old sites.
You have to note a point here as this is just the hiding, not the protection. You hide the content directory from the blokes and the lazy hackers down there on the internet. Make sure that you are not dependent on this one thing alone for complete protection.
Making a Backup
Any good security measure always involves backing up your data and important files. In case of a server crash, you might be able to recover all the lost data if you have made a copy of it. As we all know, no level of security is perfect in the internet world and having a backup plan is always safe. The WordPress security plug-in allows you to make a backup of your files and you can even schedule a backup. Apart from the content backup, you have to create the entire setup that includes themes and all of the edits you have made in the past. For this, the backup buddy comes in handy as it allows you to backup your entire site with all the edits and changes that you have made. In case of a crash, it allows you to restore your entire WordPress site in its original form.
Changing The Database Prefix
WordPress comes with a default prefix that is common with all WordPress sites. All the files that you have in your WordPress start with ‘WP’ and this makes it quite vulnerable for hackers as they all know the default name. This can be fixed simply by changing the prefix from the default ‘WP’ to anything random. The WordPress security plug-in allows you to change it with a click of a button.
As we have discussed earlier, this is also security by obscurity as in this you are not protecting anything, you are just hiding it. The lazy hackers out there who lookout for the ‘WP’ prefix won’t be able to see your changed one in this case.
- Hiding The Backend
The login screen of WordPress is quite vulnerable to attacks. The major reason is the default admin username that comes with every WordPress site. The simple way to stop these attacks is to make sure you are not using the admin username and it is backed by the use of a strong password. You can further limit the entry by restricting login attempts.
To completely avoid the threats you can change the entire URL of your page. The WordPress security plug-in allows you to completely change the URL of your site. You can come up with your own phrases in the URL and this makes your WordPress site more user-friendly and safe and will cut down the attacks.
Keeping A Check On Error Logs
You can track the hacker's work by keeping a tab on your error logs. The 404 error shows who tried to reach your page and got the 404 error log. This is a good way to find the stuff that is been broken on your WordPress site and then you can fix it. But eventually, if you see a lot of 404 error logs on your page, then it indicates something that is not broken but it shows you the numbers of spammers and hackers trying to get into your site looking for the stuff. It is something like a predator checking the fence again and again to find a way through which it can breakthrough. The WordPress security plug-in allows you to keep a tab on the 404 errors and it lets you check on the specific user that is racking up the 404 error. With the help of this, you can lock down the user showing 404 errors too many times.
Finding The Problems
As they say, prevention is better than cure. Keeping an eye on your WordPress site and looking out for anything that looks out unusual, helps. Keeping a tab on the 404 errors is a good step to start with another good method is to look out for files that are being changed on the server.
The WordPress security plug-in monitors your files and notifies you of any shortcomings and when things get changed. You can even manage the list by including and excluding certain files and directories that get changed on regular basis. Changing files can be notified when you make any updates or edits in it, but if you get a notification about the changing when you haven’t done anything in the file, then you better check it for the errors and hacks. Detection is a crucial step in WordPress security and always tries and figure out the malicious attacks on your site and stop themes soon as you can.