Under Lock & Key: WordPress Security for Your Blog
By: Amanda Boyce

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You’d never leave your apartment’s front door open to anyone yet so many of you have left your blog wide open to susceptible hacker attacks.

It’s easy to forget that your blog needs to be protect; you’d never think that your fashion blog would draw a hacker’s attention. However, think like a hacker – all your vulnerable readers, easily accessible data, a gateway to your personal information (think bank account info, credit card numbers, etc). When looking at an unsecured blog, a hacker is basically like a kid in a candy store.

If you ask any blogger, chances are they have their own hacking horror story. A few years back, my own blog was hacked, and all my posts and pictures were deleted from my server, effectively erasing three whole years of my life. Gone. Thankfully, I’m pretty strict about backing up my blog so I was able to restore my posts, but I spent at least 24 hours on the phone with my web hosts trying to determine if my site had any malware, a type of malicious software that leeches onto your computer and harvests itself on the web, and how bad the hack actually ways. You can bet that I installed several security provisions immediately.

 

Let my hacking experience be a lesson for you: be proactive about your blog’s security! Here are easy security plugins for WordPress users that you should install that will not only protect your blog posts but give your readers a better experience as well:

 

1. Addressing WordPress vulnerabilities and directing hackers away from those weak spots, Better WP Security is one of the few plugins that identifies the top security vulnerabilities, giving you an opportunity to not only secure your sight but learn how to do do it on your own as well.

2. Bulletproof Security is a favorite amongst WordPress bloggers, mainly because it is a one-click security that goes deep into your WordPress files and creates security barriers within your blog’s Root files, all without you having to do any FTP setup at all. Super painless and effective.

3. If you want to take your blog’s security to the ultimate level, Antivirus is your go-to plugin. It will scan your blog’s database as well as your template, which is a common hiding place for viruses. With daily email notifications and dashboard notifications, you will always be alerted of hacking attempts or vulnerable files and links.

4. Comment spam isn’t necessarily a security threat however it is downright obnoxious. If you have ever dealt with a flood of spam comments stuck in your filter, you know how time-consuming it can be to clean these comments up. Instead of manually deleting each one, use Akismet to filter out spam comments and save yourself and your readers the comment spam headaches.

 

On top of adding these plugins to your site, you should also make the WordPress updates that get released every few weeks or so, as they help tighten your site up with the latest WordPress software. I’ve been using an Automatic Upgrade Plugin which makes sure to keep my blog running on the best of of programs. Don’t forget to change up your login passwrods too, especially if your original passwords are pretty easy to figure out. Lastly, save your blog’s work and create a backup of your work. Themes, files, scripts, these can all be saved! Which can completely save your life, or at least it saved mine.  To back up up your blog, check with your web host as many of them will offer a backing-up service. If not, if you look in your Tools setting, you can export your blog. Whatever you do, make the proper steps to proactively secure your blog.

 

Do you have a hacker horror story? Do you have tips that our readers need to know? Share them in the comments section!

 

Comments

  1. Diana says:

    My advice: delete the meta login information if you’re using a free template. This way you’re not showing the hacker where the entrances are. In most cases your readers do not need to register in a comment system, or you can install a separate one to avoid confusion between writers and users.

  2. Mary says:

    Is there anything you can do to improve security on a WordPress.com site – I’m not self hosted yet…

    Great advice about backing up, I’ll do that now!

    • Becky says:

      Is there a specific way to back up your blog or is this synonymous with backing up your computer? Any security tips for blogger users??

  3. anonymous says:

    thanks for the article, but thought u should know there are lots of typos.

  4. Haha… were you guys inspired by my recent blog post or comment I left yesterday?

    Anyhow… to all bloggers out there!! Protect your site – its not funny when you wake up and your blog disappeared or taken over by vicious hackers.

  5. Robert says:

    Bettery wp security is the best! It can revise the user name without touching mysql.

  6. Any security tips for blogger users?

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