More than 80,000 WordPress sites were reported as being hacked in the last year. With WordPress being one of the most popular web hosting platforms, it is no surprise that it is a big target for hackers. According to tech security firm, Sucuri, many of these sites were hacked because they were using out-of-date versions of WordPress and various plug-ins, such as RevSlider, GravityForms and TimThumb.
While the developers of WordPress and these popular plugins have released many updates in recent times, several users have neglected to update them, leaving their sites vulnerable to attacks. Many WordPress users claim they simply can’t update many plugins because they are built into purchased themes. Whatever the reasoning, tech experts recommend taking extra precautions to keep your site secure.
“These statistics talk to the challenges website owners face, regardless of size, business, or industry. Website owners are unable to keep up with the emerging threats. As well, the guidance they receive to ‘stay current’ or ‘just update’ is not enough,” Sucuri explained. “Website owners are turning to other technologies, like Website Application Firewall (WAF), to give themselves and their organizations the time they require to more efficiently respond to the threats by way of virtual patching and hardening techniques at the edge.”
Whether you run a small website or have built your own online empire, site security should be one of your top priorities. Hackers don’t discriminate. They will not hesitate to take advantage of any security flaw, no matter the site’s size or stature. However, there are a few simple steps you can take to make sure your site is secure from potential attacks.
This could be one of the easiest security steps, yet many WordPress users fail to follow through with it. In the dashboard panel of your site, WordPress will allow you to set your administrative privileges and settings. Every site comes with a default admin account at the time of creation. Experts say you should delete this user immediately because of the ease of the name. Instead, create an administrative user with a unique name and password that cannot be easily guessed. This admin account should not be the same account you use for your daily posting either. WordPress recommends creating yet another user for this purpose. For every account you create for your site, you are allowed to choose what privileges it is allowed, such as editor, author or contributor.
Despite the fact that some plugins could lead to becoming a hacking target, there are several plugins that could help make your site more secure. Tech experts recommend utilizing captcha or other authentication methods for your login purpose to help keep out hackers. There are several WordPress plugins that offer these services, such as Wordfence Security. As always, you should remain alert on keep all of your plugins up-to-date. Outdated plugins are the number one cause of WordPress site hackings. Don’t let this simple thing be the reason you become a victim.
FTP And VPN
If you find yourself accessing your site’s files through a public Wi-Fi hotspot or another remote location, it is important to secure your connection with the use of a secured file transfer protocol (FTP). You can even take your security measures even further by utilizing a VPN connection, which will encrypt your website traffic and keep your vital information safe. These virtual private networks have become a popular choice for companies and private individuals. While businesses are able to easily set up a VPN with the use of their IT department and large servers, there are plenty of reputable companies that offer these services to individuals. It is also possible to create a VPN connection by yourself with the proper tools and knowledge. In fact, Mac computers are built with VPN capabilities straight out of the box. With the use of VPN tools, you can make sure your connections is extremely secure.