As a business owner or individual, there’s a good chance you use a WordPress site for your digital base. The scalable platform can be used for anything from educating customers about your business and your services to even selling your products directly. It’s no wonder WordPress operates around 33% of the internet.
Nevertheless, while WordPress is a renowned platform across the internet, that still doesn’t mean it’s free from security flaws and vulnerabilities that could threaten the integrity of your business, and the privacy/safety of your customers.
To help keep you in the know while giving you all the information you need to know to help protect your website, today we’re going to explore five important WordPress vulnerabilities that could be threatening your website.
1. An Open WordPress Login Page
By default, typing in the URL of any WordPress website followed by “/login” will take you to the Admin login page that will connect you to the backend of the website. For example, www.examplewebsite.com/login” or “/wp_login” or a similar variation.
Once here, hackers and malicious users can then set about hacking and brute forcing your passwords and email address, eventually gaining access to the backend of your website. Instead, change this URL using a plugin or the backend to hide your login page.
2. An Older Version of WordPress
Although WordPress can be annoying to update, especially when you have plugins that you want to keep using that aren’t being updated anymore, each update brings new tweaks and bug patches to help keep the core software of WordPress secure.
Failing to update your software to the latest versions mean you’re leaving your website vulnerable to these security risks. It’s up to you to make sure your WordPress is always running the latest version possible to stop this from being a problem.
3. Trusting Unknown Software Sources
WordPress is famous for its extensive range of themes and plugins which can completely enhance your WordPress experience and practically give you access to a vast range of styles, designs, and functionalities; helping you create the website of your dreams.
However, installing and running plugins from illegitimate sources mean you could be unwilling installing a backdoor into your websites that hackers can use to access your website, or make send your data across the internet.
“The best way to avoid this is to make sure you’re only downloading and installing plugins from legitimate sources that are authentic and trusted by trustworthy sources. This includes the official WordPress.org website, respective repositories, and trusted developers only; not little websites that don’t seem legitimate” explains Marie Turner, a WP manager for Brit Student.
4. No Security on Hosting Platform
This is especially common with free hosting services that run ads, but if you’re running your WordPress website on a hosting platform that doesn’t use encryption connections or a secure server, every single page on your website will be vulnerable to attack, no matter what security features you add to the website itself.
Even though secure hosting may cost more money, if you have sensitive documents on your website, customer information or private data of any kind, you’ll need to make sure everything is secured and inaccessible.
5. Dangerous PHP Exploits
PHP is the type of code used in many WordPress plugins and is a common way hackers can create or exploit security risks in your website. This is why you need to be on the ball when it comes to managing and maintaining your website.
“For example, you need to make sure you’re deleting and removing any unwanted plugins installed on your website when you’re done using them, and regularly go through your backend to keep things clean and tidy. Only have on your website the things you need for it to run properly” shares Ben Harper, a tech writer for Australia2Write.
As you can see, there are several security vulnerabilities you’ll need to think about when it comes to running your website on the WordPress service. By being mindful of what these risks and threats are, you can be proactive in protecting yourself, your business and your customers from them, helping you maintain your professional integrity and minimize the number of problems you may encounter.