Customer security is one of the most important factors for businesses to consider when developing their websites. As more and more businesses experience data breaches, customers are increasingly cautious with the types of sites they interact with. Ramp up the security of your WordPress site by taking the following precautions:
1. Protect the Login Page to Prevent Brute Force Attacks
The login page for every WordPress site gives easy access to the website’s backend, making it a popular target for hackers. With enough brute force, hackers can attach a /wp-admin/ or /wp-loogin.php to break in. To protect your website from brute force attacks, experts recommend using a custom login page URL. This simple action is enough to protect the login page and increase the security to prevent basic brute force attacks.
In your efforts to protect your login page, consider setting up a lockdown feature for your website. This lockdown feature will kick in after several failed login attempts. While this may be annoying should you ever forget your password, having a lockdown feature is essential in case someone tries to hack your site. If a hacker does attempt to use brute force to enter your site using repetitive wrong passwords, you’ll receive a notification warning you of unauthorized activity.
2. Practicing Data Governance
Data governance practices are another way you can keep customer data safe when they visit your site. What is data governance? Defined as a system of accountabilities and decision rights for information-related processes, data governance identifies the specific actions, circumstances, and methods used for specific pieces of information. Moreover, data governance determines the individuals in charge of these actions. Understanding what is data governance will help you to find the most appropriate actions to take to secure your site.
Exercise proper data governance on WordPress by carefully selecting which individuals have admin access. Make an effort to limit this level of access for these users depending on their responsibilities. This way, no one user will be able to access every facet of any data or information on your site.
3. Use Two-Factor Authentication on Your Site
Two-factor authentication has the power to step up the security on your site. This 2FA works to secure your login page by requiring that the user provide login information for two separate components. These components may be a password and a secret code, question, or set of characters. Many WordPress users use Google’s Authenticator app to send secret codes to the site owner’s phone. If you use this app to protect your WordPress login page, you’ll be the only one that can log in to the site.
4. Login to WordPress with Your Email Address
Another important way to improve the security of your WordPress site is to change the default login settings. When set to default, your WordPress site will require your username to log in. However, this can be too obvious for a hacker to figure out. Instead of putting yourself at risk with your username, start using your email ID to log in.
Email IDs, unlike your username, aren’t as predictable. Additionally, every WordPress user account also creates a unique email address, creating a safer option for users to login as well. If you want to keep using this email address-only login, there are many security plugins available that will require all users to use their email addresses to log in.
5. Adjust All of Your Passwords
Password protection is another important factor to consider when it comes to securing your WordPress site. Make sure your passwords aren’t easily compromised by changing them on a regular basis. Keep in mind the best practices for making secure passwords by using lowercase and uppercase letters, special characters, and numbers to make your password more unique.
As you aim to create more challenging passwords, consider taking part in the trend of using passphrases. These passphrases are longer phrases that are much harder to hack than a random series of letters and numbers. As they are longer phrases that are unique to you, they’re virtually impenetrable to hackers.
6. Log Out Idle Users
Another way to better protect your WordPress site is to identify potential threats before they become an issue. Users that have access to your wp-admin panel may inadvertently leave themselves logged in. This open window will put you at risk of being hacked should a passerby decide to change information to your site, alter the user’s account, or compromise information in a similar manner. Avoid this type of situation by setting your site up to automatically log out idle users.
Plugins like BulletProof Security are ideal for kicking off idle users. After setting up a custom time limit for anyone idling on the site, users will be logged out automatically after a certain period of time.
7. Encrypt Data with an SSL
SSL or secure socket layer certificate is another popular resource to use to protect your WordPress site. SSL guarantees the secure transfer of data between the server and a user’s browser. Using an SSL makes it harder for hackers to break into whatever connection you’re using. Get an SSL certificate easily by purchasing one through a third-party company. Similarly, you may be able to obtain an SSL from your hosting company as well.
In addition to protecting your site, the SSL certificate will improve your Google search rankings. As Google often ranks sites higher if they use SSL, you’ll be able to get more traffic to your site with one.
Don’t leave your customer’s data unprotected. With these best practices, you’ll be able to make sure all visitor and customer information is adequately secured. Taking steps to secure your WordPress site now will keep your users’ information properly protected in the future.