Pro Tips To Help You Secure Your WordPress Website

There’s a common misconception that WordPress websites are “easy” to hack or are more vulnerable to hacks than other content management systems (CMS).

A quick Google search will reveal a barrage of information about WordPress hacks, but not all are accurate. In reality, WordPress isn’t easier to hack than other CMSs.

WordPress websites make up a whopping 455 million total sites, an approximate 30% market share. As expected, WordPress sites are often targeted simply because there are so many.

If you’re reading this, you most likely have a WordPress site (or are planning one), and you’d like to ensure it doesn’t fall victim to an attack. Take the first steps to better security and review our tips for securing your WordPress website in 2022 and beyond.

Choose a reliable hosting service.

If you’re new to website creation and management, you may need to learn that WordPress is a CMS that helps you build websites. Besides choosing WordPress as your site builder, you will also need a web hosting provider. These are the companies that enable people and businesses to run live websites.

Like any service provider, some web hosting companies are better than others. This can be for a variety of reasons or within specific fields. Because websites are targeted by malicious threat actors, choosing a provider with exceptional security credentials is essential, especially if you run an e-commerce site.

Pick your passwords carefully.

Your password habits must be on point as a site owner or administrator. Did you know that around 70 percent of the world’s most common passwords can be cracked in under a second? Scary stuff, right?

If you’re using a common, short, or previously compromised password for your WordPress website, you could be putting your site and its users at risk. If you retain any account information on your customers and fail to meet basic security standards, you could fall foul of data protection regulations. Passwords should be long (use a minimum of 12 characters), complex, and unique.

Make sure your core WordPress software is up to date.

In 2017, security software provider Sucuri published its Hacked Website report. The company found that 39.3 percent of hacked WordPress websites ran outdated core software.

Software updates address known security issues and vulnerabilities, among other things. So, leaving your website running outdated core software is the digital equivalent of leaving your house keys at the front door when you go out.

At the time of writing (May 2022), official WordPress statistics reveal that 4.7 percent of WordPress sites have left their keys in the door and are still using Version 4.9.

If you need help determining whether your WordPress core software is up to date, log in to your WordPress account as an admin, then head to Dashboard > Updates. You can see a timestamp indicating when your site last checked for available updates.

WordPress looks for updates automatically, but you can manually confirm update availability using the “Check Again” button.

Are you having trouble with the technical aspect of your website maintenance? Contact the customer service team sooner rather than later.

Ensure your themes and plug-ins are also updated.

Your core software isn’t the only element that needs to be monitored. People choose WordPress because of the dazzling array of themes and third-party plug-ins available. These help you create the site of your dreams, but if they need to be updated, these themes and extensions can represent a security hazard.

According to a 2016 survey from WordFence, over 60 percent of hacked website owners who knew how the hacker gained access attributed the problem to a plug-in or theme vulnerability.

We love open-source software at WP Tech Support®. The bustling community of WordPress users, developers, and software engineers contributes to the myriad options available to WordPress site owners and ensures that these options continue to come.

However, we also recognize that open-source can mean inherent security issues, so we recommend that you check your themes and plug-ins are up to date. If the original Support Team no longer provides patches, replacing these elements with supported ones is time.

Get ongoing support if you need to be more tech-savvy.

Not all of us are tech masterminds, and that’s perfectly okay. One of the beauties of the modern digital realm is that anyone, even complete newbies, can dip their toes into the World Wide Web and create top-tier websites with the help of WordPress and other user-friendly tools.

Someone could start the next dot com boom, become a master of dropshipping, or make millions launching the latest must-have product to specific markets without understanding a single line of HTML code. All these situations are well within the realms of possibility.

Some would even say that the Internet is the greatest social equalizer the world has ever seen.

There is a caveat, though: as a website owner, you are responsible for protecting your customers’ sensitive data. Any issues with your site (and there are always minor issues that arise with any website) must be dealt with quickly and correctly.

After all, you can’t become the next drop shipping magnate if you can’t guarantee secure online payments. If you are not particularly tech-savvy but have great business ideas and know you can make an impact online, seek specialized support for your website.

Time is money, and with dedicated support handling your WordPress site’s technical elements, you can get back to what you do best: spending time building your business.

WP Tech Support® is on hand to help you ensure your WordPress site is secure, responsive, and running as it should. View our range of WordPress maintenance plans here, or reach out for a chat.

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