WordPress is still the most popular platform for blogs and online stores. It has many uses. Almost every web host out there can handle it. It’s no cost. It’s also SEO-friendly and out of the box, and owners can use the plugin library to add almost any functionality they need. But no one or thing is perfect, and WordPress is no different.
Even though WordPress is very safe, it can still be hacked. It’s the job of website owners everywhere to ensure they’ve done everything they need to make their sites safer and less likely to be hacked. How can you tell if your WordPress site is not secure? Let’s look at some of the vital signs in more depth.
You’re Using a Nulled Theme
There are a lot of people who use nulled themes. It’s a way to get premium, paid-for themes for free without dealing with the limits of a free trial. In other words, someone has broken them. They are like pirated movies in the form of a WordPress site.
Aside from the moral and ethical problems of using a nulled theme, most are inherently insecure. Because the person who hacked or cracked them put malicious code into them. A nulled theme might save you money initially. But it will cost you peace of mind and security in the long run.
Your Passwords Stink
Usernames and passwords are the only things that make a website safe. Too many WordPress site owners don’t do much more than a nod toward security best practices like managing passwords. Too many people use passwords like “12345,” “password,” and “456789.” Also, they are too weak.
An attacker could figure those out without any software; even strong passwords are vulnerable to some of the best hacking software available today. If you can’t manage your passwords well and protect your website well, you should rethink your role as the owner of a WordPress site.
Strong passwords have at least eight characters, a mix of uppercase and lowercase letters, and special characters like &,*,$, and #. Check out our guide on how to protect your WordPress password and username.
You Don’t Have an SSL Certificate
If this is true, you probably have more significant problems than just a general lack of security. Even with SEO and digital marketing, it’s likely that you’re not getting as much web traffic as you should be. Google now requires all sites to have an SSL certificate, so this is the case. If your website’s URL doesn’t start with “HTTPS,” it’s not secure, and Google will punish you in the SERPs.
Also, it’s essential to know that any site dealing with sensitive information like credit card numbers must have an SSL certificate by law. Find out how SSL certificates work.
All that information is encrypted and kept out of the hands of people who steal data this way. Even if you don’t deal with sensitive information, the best thing you can do as a modern WordPress site owner is to ensure you have an SSL certificate for security and peace of mind.
You Have Not Limited Login Attempts
An attacker will most likely get into your WordPress site through the page where you log in. They only need a username and a password to get in. And because so many site owners don’t bother to make solid passwords and so many people use easy-to-guess usernames like “admin,” this is one of your most significant security holes. An attacker only needs to sit on the login page and try different usernames and passwords until they find the right one.
This is because WordPress is set up so that you can try to log in as many times as you need. The good news is that this is easy to fix. Install a WordPress plugin to limit the number of times someone can try to log in, and then go to settings and click on login limit attempts.
You’re Running an Old Version of WordPress
The developers at Automattic regularly release updates and new versions of the core WordPress code. But that doesn’t mean anything if you don’t update your site. Be aware that website updates aim to improve and fix any problems.
If you don’t update your site or the person in charge of your site’s maintenance doesn’t update it, your site is inherently risky. It’s only a matter of time before attackers notice and use that you don’t keep up with updates against you.
You’re Not Using Two-Factor Authentication
No, two-factor authentication alone won’t keep attackers out. But it’s an excellent place to start and an important step to take along with the other steps we’ve discussed. When you use two-factor authentication, limit the times you can log in, do regular maintenance, and use good password management practices, your overall risk decreases significantly. This can help you avoid becoming just another statistic.
How do you protect your site with this? All you have to do is add the right plugin. There are a lot of plugins that can do this, like Google Authenticator, Two-Factor, WordPress 2-Step Verification, and Unlock, to name a few.
It’s up to site owners to ensure their WordPress sites are safe. You have to keep attackers from getting into your site, your database, and the information about your users.
There are many ways to do this, which is good because when you put them all together, you get a secure website that is much less likely to be attacked.