Why should you protect your WordPress website? What is the best security plugin for WordPress? How many do I need or one is enough? If all these questions are circling in your head you should continue reading this entry as I will answer all these questions.
We all know that WordPress is the best content management system for creating blogs and websites (as I explain in this CMS guide ). Due to its popularity, this is also the favorite of hackers to attack.
In my beginnings, many of my blogs were affected by these attacks and sometimes I lost all their content without the chance to recover it.
Because of this, I took on the task of analyzing the best Plugins to improve WordPress security and in this post, I will show you all.
Why do I need a security plugin for WordPress?
Don’t wait until it’s too late to start worrying about the security of your WordPress blog.
There are dozens of security plugins and all of these have been developed to contribute to your peace of mind and keep your business safe at all times.
But, beyond installing a Plugin that protects your website, it is also important to have a good hosting provider, and these also offer tools for the protection of your website. In the case of your blog, choosing a good hosting is important.
We invite you to take a look at this post in which we show you the top WordPress hosting providers that currently exist.
This must be of quality, robust, reliable and safe. So you can rest assured that your blog or website has solid foundations and is also safe.
What kind of attacks can my WordPress website suffer?
Believe it or not, a WordPress blog faces a number of security attacks constantly. Therefore, taking steps to combat these attacks must go beyond having updated themes, or armored passwords.
It will always be necessary to do much more and take into account other elements. Among them, I will mention the following:
- Prevent attacks on the server.
- Strengthen security in themes or templates.
- Protect the wp-admin, wp-includes and wp-config files.
- Protect the database.
- Take care of vulnerabilities in FTP
- Be attentive to any computer attack.
- Use a security plugin (the topic that concerns us today).
As you can see, it is impossible to have a single plugin that covers all these vulnerabilities. And I only mentioned the tip of the iceberg.
A clear example of the most common attacks (they have happened to me) is the injection of malicious code. Once your website has been infected, it can appear in the search results in this way:
Also, keep in mind that Google penalizes websites and removes them from search results if they have attacks that can affect visitors.
Next, this is one of the emails sent by Google a few years ago when one of my websites was hacked and injected with unwanted content:
Best plugins to improve WordPress security
Now, let’s see the top 6 of the Best WordPress Security Plugins.
Analyze them all and install only the one that suits your blog. Remember that if you install too many plugins your blog becomes slow.
It doesn’t matter if you choose a paid or free security plugins. The important thing is that you choose the right one, and for this I am here, to guide you towards the best choice.
1. All in One WP Security & Firewall (My preferred)
All in One WP Security & Firewall is a software with a high reputation in the WordPress community. If you opt for it you will get great security level support in quite important aspects of WordPress.
Today it has more than 1M active installations, making it quite popular. Among its most attractive features, it has a dashboard to rate the security level of your website, from 0 to 470. This function will depend on the configuration you have enabled.
However, with this security plugin, you are required to configure the change categories: basic, intermediate and advanced. This way you will avoid data loss risks, but backup is a factor that you should always consider.
I must tell you that for now, this is my favorite plugin in terms of security for WordPress. Since I installed and configured the attacks they have stopped 100%.
Then I invite you to know its most outstanding features:
- User account monitoring for obvious vulnerabilities. Scan of attacks generated by brute force. It also allows the disabling of Meta information in WordPress.
- Logout automatically, depending on the configuration (in minutes) and very strong password generation.
- Analysis of activity performed by users and approval of manual creation of new WP users.
- It has anti-XSS protection, IPS blocking, backups and changes of the admin account name.
- It has Antivirus and firewall.
- Automatic detection of modifications in any file. Besides, it prevents SPAM comments and blacklist attacks.
2. Ithemes Security (Of the most complete)
Ithemes Security is considered one of the most complete security plugins based on user ratings. In addition, it is very easy and simple to configure.
It has a free and a premium version. To access more advanced settings you must purchase the paid version. However, do not worry that it is not very expensive.
But if your website is quite simple, I assure you that with its free version it will be enough. With this version, you will be able to cover your website in 30 different ways.
Among the vulnerabilities that will cover your website, we have:
- Brute force attacks. Thanks to your scan you will be able to detect if there is any vulnerability and act immediately in its repair. In addition, it is able to stop the modification of files, promote the use of secure passwords and SSL in the administrative or entry pages and shields the security of the server.
- It has an anti-bot surveillance system, apart from being able to react preventively to the detection of malware or blacklists. It is able to detect any changes without authorization to the system file.
- It generates backup copies frequently to the database and can count on them in case it needs to be restored.
3. Wordfence Security (Excellent ratings)
This plugin has excellent user ratings and is also quite complete. Undoubtedly, an excellent protection alternative because it has malware and virus scanning. Besides, it will analyze the real traffic of your website and you will have a fairly powerful firewall.
Its premium version brings with it the double authentication factor or also known as IPS blocking. What makes it a tempting offer to opt for the paid option.
Among other of its functionalities we have:
- It has a firewall capable of detecting and blocking malicious traffic and blacklists. In addition, it will protect your website against brute force attacks, limiting records, code protection, and malicious content.
- Scan files, themes, and plugins with the purpose of detecting the presence of malware, spam, security holes, among others. The scanning process will also detect if any changes occurred, system vulnerabilities and is able to repair the altered files. It will show you alerts in case of detecting an intrusion to the system.
- It has a monitor of visits and attempted hacking, where it will provide you with the source of the intrusion and its IP address. Its free version offers you an anti-spam comments filter, but in its premium version, this function is more advanced. Besides, it has a double identification system that will avoid brute force and IP attacks.
Undoubtedly, an excellent option that takes almost three million downloads and that is becoming increasingly popular on the part of the community.
4. Jetpack (Comes pre-installed with WordPress)
The popularity of this plugin is due to its excellent security features for WordPress. It was developed by WordPress, and in addition to offering security, it has design and marketing services.
It has a module configuration system and brings you a free, personal, premium and professional version. So you can choose the one that best suits your needs.
Among its most outstanding features we have:
- Protection against brute force attacks and spam filtering.
- Make real-time backups of the page or daily, depending on the configuration.
- Immediate notification in case the page falls and when the operability is recovered. Generation of reports on the time the website stopped operating.
- Automatic plugins update, security authentication, and security scanning.
- Migration and restoration of the website easily, with permanent technical support.
The installation process is very simple, you just have to have a session started from your WordPress and do it from the plugins control panel.
Once there, click on the “Add new” tab and look for Jetpack. Select “Install new” and you will be ready to enjoy its magnificent features. You just have to go to its configuration and add or remove the features you consider.
5. Sucuri Security (Detects vulnerabilities on time)
This security plugin for WordPress is mainly based on the protection of your website’s files. In addition, it has the ability to monitor the blacklist, create security alerts and detect vulnerabilities.
With this software, you can perform malware scanning and track all the activities of your website.
In its premium version, you can enjoy more advanced security options at all levels.
- You can perform a security audit on the website activities while the data is in the cloud of this software. In this way, no cybercriminal will delete the data from your site, while this backup is safe.
- Integrity and vulnerability monitoring of website files.
- Scanning of malware remotely, by contrasting results with the malware database.
- Monitoring of the blacklist for the detection of negative signaling of your website before some security aspects. It will even help you solve it to get out of this blacklist.
6. WP fail2ban (Another good option)
Although it is not a plugin that has all the security features as complete as all the ones I just described above it is worth using, too.
However, it is on our list as it specializes in one of the most important and necessary vulnerabilities for WordPress. It is about protection against brute force attacks.
With this plugin, you can make a record of all attempts to log in to WordPress thanks to LOG_AUTH.
The configuration process is very simple. This can be done if you install, activate and perform the following configurations:
- Configure IP addresses. In this way, they will not be blocked, in case you access it from an unusual site.
- Define the maximum number of logging attempts that will generate a brute force alert.
- Defines the blocking time of the IP addresses.
Other ways to protect your website in addition to the WordPress security plugin
- Keep your WordPress updated. It is important to keep WordPress up to date, as these security elements are also included in these updates. This process is very simple if you configure the notifications in the administrative panel.
- Take care of the plugins. To do this you must keep the plugins updated just like the previous aspect. However, make a backup before updating it as a preventive way. This aspect implies not abusing the use of plugins, leave only those that you consider essential.
- Take care of your subject. To do this you must keep it updated, and in case of free downloads, verify that they are from a reliable site with positive ratings.
- Dismisses the use of the ADMIN user. This user will be the gateway of the hacker who wishes to enter your website. Create a new user and place the privileges of the managed And that’s it!
- Automate the backup or backup system. So you will never forget to make them and you will have periodic copies.
- Set the limit of failed attempts. This will protect your WordPress against malicious user attempts.
- Do not rule out the use of captcha and double authentication. With these options, you will add more layers of security to your WordPress.
- Use professional and quality hosting.
- Constantly audit your WordPress.
- Hide your version of WordPress. When you hide the WordPress version, the malicious user will not know where to attack. Since each version has unique vulnerabilities.
- Create the minimum number of users, and place the minimum privileges.
Finally, I hope this information has helped you to choose the best WordPress security plugin ideal for your website.
To see other ways to improve the security of your WordPress blog you can see this complete guide that we have already prepared for you.