As the most popular publishing platform on the Internet, WordPress has become a popular target for hackers and spammers alike. But that doesn’t mean WordPress isn’t secure. In fact, no website is 100% safe from malicious attacks. However, when kept up-to-date, WordPress is an extremely secure platform, thanks to the large community of talented and dedicated contributors who strive to keep it that way. The sheer number of eyes and hands across the world working together to manage regular releases, patches and security fix schedules is a key enabler of WordPress’ success and growth as the world’s most popular Content Management System.

While the WordPress Security Team actively works to identify and resolve security issues in the core software application, it’s important to know that your WordPress website’s security goes beyond the core code base, and many of the security management responsibilities still ultimately fall on internal IT departments, primary users and external web providers.

Generally, WordPress security problems arise from three possible culprits:

  1. Through a security vulnerability on a hosting platform
  2.  Security issue in a WordPress Theme or Plugin
  3. Weak login information

So now that we know a few reasons why a site may be hacked, let’s discuss a few ways to keep your WordPress website secure.

Use a trusted hosting company

While WordPress can be installed on a multitude of platforms and the core software provides many provisions for operating a secure web application, the configuration of the operating system and the underlying web server hosting the software is equally important to keep the WordPress application secure.

Statistics from WP White Security show that 41% of hacking attempts are caused by a security vulnerability on a hosting platform. This is all the reason to ensure you are hosting your website with a good quality, trusted hosting company. When deciding on a hosting company for your website, make sure they place an emphasis on security and that they support WordPress websites.

Keep an eye on updates for themes and plugins

It’s been stated that more than half of all successful WordPress hacks have been a result of a security hole in a theme or plugin used. When using these functionalities on your WordPress website, it’s important to keep an eye on any updates needed as well as any that haven’t been updated in a long time. While we don’t encourage our clients to do updates themselves, if you absolutely must download a theme or plugin on your WordPress website, make sure to ask yourself these four critical questions.

Stronger login settings

Weak passwords make it easy for hackers to gain access to your site using a brute force automated script. That’s why it’s not only recommended for all users on your site to use a strong password, but to also change these passwords frequently. Additionally, you should consider…

  • Removing the default ‘admin’ username setting
  • Limiting login attempts
  • Assigning the proper user roles for those contributing to your website.

From single developers to Fortune 100 companies, the number of companies turning to WordPress is rising at a surprising rate. These companies didn’t let security issues stop them from using the most popular CMS around, and neither should you!