Hopefully you’ll never see that large red malware warning after entering the URL for your website. It would not be a pleasant sight, I’m sure. In fact, it may cause panic, but rest assured there are a few simple steps you can take right now to help ensure the security of your WordPress site.
Here are three simple steps you can take to prevent hackers from gaining access to your site.
1. Back up your site weekly
We back up our own site and our clients’ sites every day but you should at least back up weekly. Your hosting provider may keep backups of your site as well but these are generally for catastrophic server failures only. You can manually back up your site or you can use a service to perform scheduled backups. Here is a short list of plugins for backing up your site:
2. Update WP core, plugins and themes
So you’ve backed up your website but is everything up-to-date? Updating your site is important because your old version of WordPress can contain vulnerabilities that hackers will try to exploit. Be sure to back up your site prior to updating as some plugin versions may not be compatible with each other or your current version of core. You’ll want to restore from the latest backup if there are conflicts after the update. Plugins make it easy to update your site and some will perform an automatic backup of your site before the update is performed. Here are a few plugins you may want to consider:
Easy Updates Manager
WP Auto Updater
3. Check your website for malware
Now that your site is backed up and up-to-date, the last step is to scan the site for malware. There are plugins and services you can use to accomplish this. Here is a short list of plugins and services you can use to help keep your site secure:
Quttera Web Malware Scanner
Sucuri Security – Auditing, Malware Scanner and Security Hardening
All In One WP Security & Firewall
Lastly, one of the simplest things you can do to make your WordPress site more secure is to use a secure password. Be sure that when you enter or change your password, WordPress rates it as “strong” and not “very weak”, “weak” or “medium”.
Hopefully, once you have performed the steps above, you can sleep more easily knowing that hackers will have a much more difficult time trying to exploit your site.
Clearmark Studios offers a Web Care Maintenance Plan to all its clients. If you don’t already have a maintenance plan in place, check with your web designer or hosting partner to see if they offer such a service or contact us to see if we can help.