Needless to say, a hacked WordPress website is no fun at all. It kind of leaves you with the feeling like you have just had your teeth drilled into by the dentist, been mugged on the way back and are now parading around naked for the world to see. It leaves you feeling vulnerable, exposed and downright embarrassed.
Unfortunately there are a lot of bad people out there. People who will exploit or destroy your website for no other reason that just because they can. While others may have some political or militant agenda that they feel the need to share with all of your website visitors. Either way having your WordPress website hacked is simply awful.
So how can you prevent it from happening or at least make your website as secure as possible?
Here are some steps you can take to tighten up your website security and limit the possibility of being hacked:
Backup your website regularly
This might sound like an obvious one but you will be very surprised to learn how many people simply don’t give backups a second thought. Many WordPress website owners don’t understand the importance of having a backup until it’s too late and many simply assume that their hosting company is making a backup. Make sure you backup your website files and database regularly, at least once a week or daily if you can. Don’t simply rely on your hosting company for backups. However you should also check with your website host that they are indeed making some form of backup. Many ‘cheap’ hosting companies don’t backup client websites and charge an extra fee for this – sometimes clients only discover this when it is too late and their website is irrecoverable.
Keep WordPress up to date
I need to keep WordPress up to date? – you ask… Yes you do! Your website may have been built years ago and never updated, which means that several fixes and security releases have not been installed. This leaves your website vulnerable to attack. Just because you never had a problem in the past, doesn’t mean you won’t have a problem in the future. New threats are being released every day and old files become vulnerable. Not sure how to upgrade WordPress or simply want someone to do it for you? Let us help you.
Update your plugins
As with keeping WordPress up to date, you need to also ensure that all of your plugins are updated too. Outdated plugins can sometimes cause more vulnerability than WordPress core files being out of date. This is because plugins are developed by thousands of different people, some of which have no accountability to anyone. Sometimes plugin authors only discover vulnerabilities in their code after release and they issue an update as soon as possible – if you don’t apply the update your website will be susceptible to attack.
Secure your WordPress website
Keeping your website files backed up and up to date is not enough. You need to take active steps to securing your website. WordPress is based on PHP which, is a dynamic language which connects to a MySQL database that stores all of your content and details about your website. All of this helps WordPress to be a great blog and CMS tool but it can open a doorway for intrusion. We recommend that you install a top quality security plugin that will harden your website and ensure that it is less likely to be attacked or at leased intruded. Not sure how to do this – we can help you secure your website.
Yes as the word suggests be an active pro. Ensure that you check your WordPress dashboard regularly for updates. Check that your backups are still running. Make sure your security plugin is still working and stay informed about potential threats. At the end of the day you are responsible for your website. Not your website hosting company, not your website developer – but you. If this sounds a bit daunting and you would rather have professionals take care of it then you should sign-up for our WordPress Help service – WP Help.
We make sure that our client websites are backed up daily to a secure external source. We proactively upgrade WordPress core files and plugins without clients even being aware of an update. We install security measures and harden your WordPress installation. We also run a monthly security scan to ensure that all is in order. Perhaps it’s time for some peace of mind?