Tips for Choosing a Secure WordPress Host

WordPress Security 9 min read
Last Update on November 28, 2022

Finding the best online hosting service for your WordPress site can be challenging. Let us help you find the right one by giving you some tips.

Website security is a hot topic right now, especially with the number of data breaches on the rise. Hackers can still target you even if you’re not a big company. Small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are often the target of attacks these days. Obviously, you need to pay a lot of attention to the security of your website.

You need to take care of several things, from regular maintenance on WordPress to ensure that your employees are trained in cybersecurity. But it all starts with your web host.

The right host can help keep you safe, while the wrong one can put your data and the data of your visitors at risk. So, how do you ensure that the WordPress host you choose is safe? We’ve explained everything below.

Size of The Hosting Company

Even though this doesn’t guarantee that a web host will do everything they can to protect their customers, it’s more likely that a larger host will give you better security than a smaller one.

This is mostly because of one thing: budget. Larger companies usually have bigger budgets and can protect their users with more resources. Smaller companies don’t have the budget to do that, and they often think that because they are small, attackers won’t notice them. This is never a good way to protect a website.

Backup Capabilities

Yes, you can back up your WordPress site on your own with plug-ins. If you want to, you can even do it by hand. But the easiest and fastest way is to do it on the server, which means that your host needs to give you the tools you need.

You can use your control panel to access several backup options with the right host. Make sure that the options fit your needs (full site, the database only, theme, etc.). Note that not all hosting plans come with access to backups for all hosts. It’s usually a perk that only comes with packages that cost more.

Built-in Scanning

Your host should have up-to-date security software on all servers and regularly check for threats like malware, viruses, and unusual traffic.

Any behavior that is out of the ordinary should be recorded, and the security solution should be updated regularly to deal with new threats.

Note that some hosts charge extra for access to security software tools, and others only let you use them if you join at a higher level.

HTTPS and SSL Certificates

You shouldn’t buy hosting from a company that doesn’t offer SSL certificates and HTTPS encryption. Some hosts charge extra for these features, but many offer them for free as part of all their plans.

You can’t encrypt traffic coming in without an SSL certificate. If your site doesn’t have HTTPS encryption, there’s a good chance that Google will mark it as not secure. This will affect your traffic instantly.

Ongoing Auditing

No web host is perfect, and new threats mean that even the most advanced software will eventually stop protecting you. So, the host you choose should do regular audits to find places where their security is weak and then take steps to fix those problems.

If the host doesn’t do auditing, they won’t know when new threats make their platform vulnerable. Before buying a hosting plan, ask the host about their audit schedule if it needs to be clarified.

Patches and Upgrades

If you don’t have to run your own server, you don’t have to buy one, which saves you money. Another benefit is that someone else takes care of all the maintenance work. Your host should take care of OS patches and upgrades, which should be done on time.

Just like WordPress updates include essential safety and security changes and fixes for security holes, patches and updates for servers do the same. Make sure your host stays on top of updates and fixes, or your website could get left behind.

Firewall

Your host should have a firewall to stop attacks like DDoS and brute force. The right firewall can help prevent these attacks and defend against a wide range of other threats as well. Keep in mind that firewall protection varies significantly from industry to industry.

Some hosts will provide the firewall, while others will let you bring your own. Both can work, but before you buy hosting, you need to know what’s happening with the hosts you’re thinking about.

SFTP

SFTP (Secure File Transfer Protocol) is the secure version of FTP, which is a path to move large amounts of data to or from your host’s servers. Your transfers are encrypted and safe from attacks and threats when you use SFTP. But not every host has SFTP. Check again to make sure you can do this.

Live Support

Okay, so having access to support won’t stop a threat or stop hackers from going after your site in the first place. But it can have a significant difference in how easy it is to deal with problems if you run into them.

Any good host will somehow give you access to support staff, but the best hosts will provide you with more than one solution. Look for a host that has a knowledge base so you can solve problems on your own and a ticketing system with online chat and email support. You should also be able to get help by phone.

Conclusion

Keeping a WordPress site safe requires putting together a lot of different things in the right way. As the owner of the website, you have many things to do.

But your host has a part to play as well. Make sure your hosting company is up to the task and provides you with the necessary tools and skills to keep your website safe from the many threats that exist today.

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