Cybersecurity is a growing concern in an increasingly digital world. Hackers can do irreparable damage to businesses and individuals by successfully taking over their websites, personal data, and customer personal and financial information. Even a mere DDoS attack can do a lot of damage. The extent of the danger is such that tech giants like Google are flagging and blacklisting more than 20,000 websites for malware attacks and over 50,000 websites for phishing every week.
If you are running a business and your website is the center of the business model, including a webshop, you need to understand the threats that are out there and carefully follow the best practices and security tips to decrease the chance of getting hacked.
You may be searching, “How to secure WordPress site,” and coming up empty. But we have you covered. In this short guide, we tried to explain where most of the danger comes from and offer some sound advice and tips.
The Pillars of WordPress Security
The WordPress platform’s popularity came overnight, as what was once a simple blogging platform turned into one of the most influential and user-friendly platforms for building websites. In turn, the popularity put the platform on the radar of hackers who quickly started to dissect the security flaws and cause tremendous damage.
After reviewing and discussing which factors influence the WordPress website’s cybersecurity, we prepared a list of tips and advice you should follow to minimize the risk of your website getting hacked.
The best place to start is the choice of the hosting provider. Most hosting providers love to promote their fantastic speed, impressive uptime, and ease of use. Still, very few are transparent about their cybersecurity record and what steps they are taking to protect your data.
Consult industry professionals, do your research, and select a hosting provider with an excellent cybersecurity record (do not expect perfection), quality customer service, and flexibility in customizing a security system to fit your needs. Stay away from shared hosting packages, and opt-in for a managed hosting package for improved security.
Some we would recommend are
- Best web hosting in Australia / Best WordPress hosts in Australia
- Best web hosting in Canada
- Top web hosting in UK
Keep WordPress Updated
WordPress frequently publishes updates of its platform that include the latest security fixes as well. Make sure that your website is always running the newest version of WordPress. Do not stop there. Take it a step further by updating all the plugins and themes you might be using with your WordPress site. It will minimize the possibility of getting hacked through a critical system vulnerability.
Create Strong Passwords and Two-Factor Authentication
No easy passwords – it is as simple as that. All of the administrators, webmasters, and even customers using your platform should have strong passwords. This advice goes against human nature, which prefers passwords that are easy to remember. Unfortunately, this is a big security leak, and it is a matter of time before those passwords are in the hands of the hackers.
Complex passwords are just a small step. Additionally, turning on the two-factor authentication for users will add another layer of security and help you quickly spot if any user accounts might be compromised.
It is impossible to implement a security system that will protect against all attacks and have a 100% record. Things are always going to happen, and the best you can do is minimize the damage and always be ready to bounce back. A quality backup solution is essential to this.
Some web hosts like SiteGround, Hostinger, and Kinsta take daily or weekly backups. However, if your host doesn’t, you can use software, WordPress plugins, or other services to schedule regular backups to ensure that customer data is secure and that the website will be up and running in no time.
Migrate Your WordPress Website to SLL/HTTPS
Secure Sockets Layer or SSL is a protocol that encrypts the data exchanged between website visitors and the WordPress website. The encryption makes it much more difficult to intercept data. Activating the SSL protocol will switch the domain to HTTPS protocol, which uses security certificates to evaluate the traffic coming to and from the WordPress website.
Change Admin Username and Password
This one sounds silly, but you would be surprised to know how many people leave the original admin username and password. One of the first things that hackers will check is the username and password. Go for something unique and in line with the secure password standards outlined in the previous sections.
Disable File Editing
Taking into consideration that your website will, at one point or another, be a target of hackers, it is essential to limit the damage that such an attack can cause and protect your website. A great place to start is by disabling the editing of the WordPress file. If hackers are unable to edit the WordPress files, they might leave your website alone and focus on easier targets.
Hopefully, this short guide helps you better understand the risks of running a website on WordPress and some sound advice on how to keep it running well. Let us know about your experience with hackers on WordPress.