In the U.S., 23 percent of registered domains run on WordPress. Bloggers generate an average of six WordPress posts per second, and they power their blogs and websites using over 29,000 WordPress plugins. The popularity of WordPress also makes it a juicy target for cyber attackers. If you’re not keeping your WordPress blog and plugins up-to-date, you’re exposing your website to hackers.
The Open-Source Conundrum
WordPress is an open-source content management system (CMS), so its code is available to anyone, anywhere. Openness enables a large community to create and share WordPress code. As a result, web developers and website designers have created both themes and plugins for almost any imaginable function. The open source nature of WordPress keeps it flexible, innovative, and easy-to-use.
Unfortunately, openness has its downside; attackers can also access available WordPress code. The good news is that you can enjoy the open source advantages of WordPress while protecting your website and your business. Regularly updating your website and your plugins is the best way to defend against attackers.
Protecting Your Website/Blog
When you first start a blog, you feel enthusiastic about it and post to it regularly. After a while, if your blog doesn’t generate a lot of engagement, you might post and check for comments less frequently. The bad news is that if you’re visiting your blog less often, you’re leaving it vulnerable to cyber attack. Keep hackers from vandalizing your blog or stealing information by following these simple steps:
- Update everything regularly. Visit your blog at least once per week, whether you plan to post or not. Download all available updates for WordPress, your themes, and your plugins.
- Consider a security plugin. You can also protect your website by downloading a security plugin, like iThemes Security. However, keep in mind that your security plugin is only secure when it’s up-to-date. If you download it and then fail to update it, the plugin can’t block the latest cyber threats.
- Delete your admin username. “Admin” is an easy username for attackers to guess, and they can use it to initiate brute force attacks. To protect your WordPress site, add a new username and assign admin privileges to the new username. When you’re finished, delete the original default admin user.
If You Need Help Maintaining Your WordPress Site
If you’re too busy running your business to maintain your WordPress site, sign up for one of our Continuous Improvement Plans. While you’re running your business, we strengthen your WordPress security, improve SEO, and clean up comment spam. Get started today.