Lesson 4 – How Can You Trust #WordPress

Building your online presence is a bit nerve wracking – especially when using a database driven software like WordPress. It is so different than what you may understand. When you put information into documents on your computer and then back it up on a USB, you can understand this process.

But with WordPress you are deliberately exposing yourself to hackers and spammers.

Before you start building your website, build your safety net.

First set up enough security to foil hackers as best as possible.

Next create a weekly habit of backing up your website and downloading it to your own computer or a third party service.

This tutorial shows you some very valuable ways to gain confidence that your website and all of your hours of effort will be protected.

Now for those of you thinking – there are great security plugins out there too – you are right. Installing and configuring a plugin like WordFence is a solid idea. I do not have a single security plugin I recommend because this is not my area of expertise. But based on popularity you can select one for yourself.

From the WordFence plugin description:

WORDFENCE WORDPRESS SECURITY FEATURES

WordPress Firewall

  • Web Application Firewall stops you from getting hacked by identifying malicious traffic, blocking attackers before they can access your website.
  • Threat Defense Feed automatically updates firewall rules that protect you from the latest threats. Premium members receive the real-time version.
  • Block common security threats like fake Googlebots, malicious scans from hackers and botnets.

Blocking Features

  • Real-time blocking of known attackers. If another site using Wordfence is attacked and blocks the attacker, your site is automatically protected.
  • Block entire malicious networks. Includes advanced IP and Domain WHOIS to report malicious IP’s or networks and block entire networks using the firewall. Report security threats to network owner.
  • Rate limit or block security threats like aggressive crawlers, scrapers and bots doing security scans for vulnerabilities in your site.
  • Choose whether you want to block or throttle users and robots who break your security rules.
  • Premium users can also block countries and schedule scans for specific times and a higher frequency.

Login Security

  • Sign-in using your password and your cellphone to vastly improve login security. This is called Two Factor Authentication and is used by banks, government agencies and military world-wide for highest security authentication.
  • Includes two-factor authentication, also referred to as cellphone sign-in.
  • Enforce strong passwords among your administrators, publishers and users. Improve login security.
  • Checks the strength of all user and admin passwords to enhance login security.
  • Includes login security to lock out brute force hacks and to stop WordPress from revealing info that will compromise security.

Security Scanning

  • Scans for the HeartBleed vulnerability – included in the free scan for all users.
  • Scans core files, themes and plugins against WordPress.org repository versions to check their integrity. Verify security of your source.
  • See how files have changed. Optionally repair changed files that are security threats.
  • Scans for signatures of over 44,000 known malware variants that are known security threats.
  • Scans for many known backdoors that create security holes including C99, R57, RootShell, Crystal Shell, Matamu, Cybershell, W4cking, Sniper, Predator, Jackal, Phantasma, GFS, Dive, Dx and many many more.
  • Continuously scans for malware and phishing URL’s including all URL’s on the Google Safe Browsing List in all your comments, posts and files that are security threats.
  • Scans for heuristics of backdoors, trojans, suspicious code and other security issues.

Monitoring Features

  • See all your traffic in real-time, including robots, humans, 404 errors, logins and logouts and who is consuming most of your content. Enhances your situational awareness of which security threats your site is facing.
  • A real-time view of all traffic including automated bots that often constitute security threats that Javascript analytics packages never show you.
  • Real-time traffic includes reverse DNS and city-level geolocation. Know which geographic area security threats originate from.
  • Monitor your DNS security for unauthorized DNS changes.
  • Monitors disk space which is related to security because many DDoS attacks attempt to consume all disk space to create denial of service.

Multi-Site Security

  • Wordfence Security for multi-site also scans all posts and comments across all blogs from one admin panel.
  • WordPress Multi-Site (or WordPress MU in the older parlance) compatible.

IPv6 Compatible

  • Fully IPv6 compatible including all whois lookup, location, blocking and security functions.

Major Theme and Plugins Supported

  • Includes support for other major plugins and themes like WooCommerce.

Cher Cunningham

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