The World Economic Forum predicted that cyber-attacks will constitute the third largest global threat in 2018. This trend will likely continue throughout the 2020’s.
Most website owners take a reactive approach to website security and only deal with security issues once their site has been compromised. There are many ways your website could become compromised due to a security breach or vulnerability, therefore it is essential to make security a priority before any problems occur.
Website security is highly undervalued as many website owners simply don’t understand the devastating impact of a security breach.
As a result of the growing popularity of WordPress, hackers, and spammers have taken a keen interest in breaking its security.
In this post, we are going to analyze the top 3 WordPress security plugins that will safeguard your website from common security vulnerabilities.
Formerly known as Better WP Security, iThemes is an all-in-one security plugin that claims to offer 30+ ways to secure and protect your WordPress website.
The plugin tackles brute force attacks, moves the default WordPress login page, automatically blocks and reports IP addresses of failed login attempts, and enforces super-strong passwords. Some other key features include:
- Fixes security vulnerabilities in seconds and gives a report
- Bans troublesome users, bots, and hosts
- Enhances server security
The pro version of the plugin gives an extra layer of protection- two-factor authorization. It sends a passcode to the user‘s mobile device(s) that is required along with the standard password. IThemes pro uses a software called Sucuri SiteCheck for malware scanning which has scheduling, email notifications, and a 10-point evaluation.
Other important pro features include,
- Quick updates on WordPress salt and keys
- Dashboard widget to manage WordPress security
- Easy generation of strong passwords via profile screen
- Google reCAPTCHA integration
- Private ticketed support
- Multiple 2FA capabilities
Pro or free, iThemes security is one of the best security plugins which is worth checking out.
This free WordPress security plugin perfectly depicts its name. It focuses mainly on brute force attacks and helps to fight other common website attacks as well.
The plugin comes with htaccess and wp-config.php backup, anti-spam measures, and front-end copy protection. It also protects your WordPress database and core files.
All in One comes with three levels of firewall protection- basic, intermediate and advanced. With these options in hand, you can set the firewall rules per your liking.
Best of all, the plugin is very user-friendly. It gives a website security score for monitoring and in case you want to make any changes in the plugin’s settings, it will tell you how the change will impact the security score.
Overall, All in One WP is a comprehensive and easy-to-use WordPress security plugin that takes security to a whole new level, helping you protect your WordPress website.
- Protects against Cross-Site Scripting (XSS)
- Includes a password strength tool to ensure visitors create strong passwords
- One-click database backup
- Stops user enumeration
- Reduces registration attempts by robots via Honeypot
- Excellent comment spam security
- Active installations 900,000+
- Last updated: 2 weeks ago
- Average ratings 4.8/5 based on 1048 reviews
- Requires WordPress Version: 5.0 or higher
With more than two million downloads, Wordfence is the most popular WordPress security plugins. It covers all the major security checks such as WordPress firewall and monitoring, login security, IP blocking, and security scanning.
It gives an impressive live traffic view which allows you to view real-time traffic updates and see if hack attempts were made on your website.
Wordfence is multisite compatible and also includes cell phone sign in that prevents your website from brute force attacks. It has amazing blocking features that block well-known attackers in real time and entire malicious networks that can threaten your website.
The free version of the plugin has the following features
- Web application firewall
- Real-time threat defense feed
- Advanced manual blocking
The paid version of the plugin offers the following features
- Real-time threat defense feed
- Check if the website is spamvertized
- See if website IP is generating spam
- Cell phone sign in
- Country blocking
- Advanced comment spam filter
- Frequent scans
- Premium support
- Active installations 4+ million
- Last updated 3 weeks ago
- Requires WordPress Version: 3.9 or higher
- Average ratings 4.7/5 based on 3,677 reviews
- The paid version is $8.25 per month
Note- According to the plugin author,
Wordfence doesn’t have an option to change wp-admin/wp-login.php URLs, also please take care that admin-ajax.php is a very important file for many themes/plugins and it must be accessible on your website, this file’s location is in “wp-admin” folder, so just make sure you aren’t blocking access to it, if so, many plugins/theme will stop working. I recommend watching this video regarding “Should You Hide Your WordPress Login Page?“
Among the security plugins in our list, we like All In One WP Security & Firewall because it has important features like low file size, custom login URL, captcha at admin login, and brute force to lockout for 24 hours after 5 failed login attempts.
That said, you must remember sometimes security plugins may miss few malware detections, they won’t suit all hosting plans, and may not work perfectly on the installed websites. These points are true for every single security plugin in the WordPress directory, so you have to handle them with caution.
If these plugins do not meet your security needs, you may want to opt for custom security plugins. Custom security plugins will be designed to perfectly meet your website’s security needs. If you need any help with a custom plugin solution, contact Wisevu for further assistance.
Our advice is to first secure your website with any one of the above security plugins and then explore if a custom solution will work for you.
Which WordPress security plugin are you currently using and why? Do share it with us in the comments section below.