Today, more than 72.6 million websites of the whole internet depend on WordPress. Because of its massive use and popularity, WordPress is also a popular target among hackers, data thieves and malicious code distributors. Hence it has become the demand of high times to stay on the watch for your website, even government websites get hacked (so then yours can). Here are a few quick tips that must be in your knowledge if you own a WordPress website:
WordPress (open source software) is regularly maintained & updated. Although minor updates are installed by WordPress automatically, you need to manually install major updates along with plugins & themes.
Whenever security vulnerability is reported, WordPress team releases a new update to fix that bug. If you are not using the latest version this means hackers can attack your website through that bug. Large number of websites are hacked daily only because their WordPress or theme or some plugin is not up-to-date. Therefore, regularly updating your core WordPress, theme & plugins is a mandatory step to stay on the safe side from being hacked.
Change Default Username & Use Strong Password:
Half of the login credential is the username. If you’re using the default WordPress username, then you have left only the password to guess for hackers and brute their way in.
Hence update your username through phpMyAdmin or make a new user and then delete the old one. In addition to the username, use a strong password with complex, upper & lower case characters. You can save it in Notepad++ or use any passwords managing App.
Use SSL Certification:
In any online communication SSL (Secure Socket Layer) is a secure & standard encryption layer between a web server and a browser. It is provided only to genuine websites, therefore important for your website validation. SSL encrypted websites are known to be safe and protected against hacking. Implement SSL certification on your website right away.
SSL also impacts your website’s Google ranking, since Google ranks sites higher that have SSL than those without SSL.
Monitor Your Website Files & Activity:
If you are handling a CMS like WordPress, then it is highly recommended to monitor the activities of different users on your website. Have a check to make sure no user or contributor has tried to change anything on your website without your approval. To go one step further in the website security, use plugins to monitor these changes.
Additionally, delete files, pictures, database, artworks, plugins or applications that are not being used currently. It is important to keep track of your database and file structure so that you can monitor changes easily.
Backup Your Data:
Anything can be lost in a digital world because nothing is 100% secured. Backing up your website regularly allows you to restore your lost files or in case you are unable to access your website. There are a lot of, free or paid, plugins available for WordPress website back up. It’s important that you take website’s backup remotely along with your hosting account.
Enable Web Application Firewall (WAF):
A web application firewall (WAF) is used to block all malicious traffic from your website. It’s the easiest and most reliable way to filter, monitor & protect your website against malicious web traffic. It also protects your website against major threats like SQL Injection, Application Vulnerability Exploits & Injected code (malware). So if you want to ensure your website is free of malware, enable web application firewall.
Hire An Experienced Security Specialist:
While running an online business it gets hectic and crucial to run everything yourself. Although you can take care of small things yourself, major security measures can only be handled by a specialist. Understanding the threats and the skills of hackers are crucially important in order to define your defense strategy. It takes not only the right technologies but also the right person to efficiently implement strategies. Hiring a web security specialist you can rely on, will save your business and time as well.