Security plugins to protect your WordPress website

Written by Jamie Bowers

Just as your home is secured with locks and other measures, your website also needs robust security measures — the kind that are complex enough to deter cybercriminals and yet user-friendly for customers to operate.

The importance of additional security for WordPress

WordPress and its ecosystem of plugins and hosting platforms have a solid foundation of security elements and options. These basic measures include offering password protection, encryption of data with SSL, protection from spam, and automatic updates so that WordPress Core, plugins, and themes stay up-to-date.

While these are helpful, it’s also wise to reinforce these with services designed to detect and combat more complex security threats. WordPress has an open-source nature which means that its code is available to everyone, including malicious actors who search for and exploit vulnerabilities. The vast ecosystem of plugins and themes, although beneficial for customization and functionality, often becomes a double-edged sword. Not all plugins and themes are kept up-to-date or scrutinized for security, making them easy targets for exploitation.

Unpacking security terminology

Security lingo can be intimidating, here’s a quick rundown of terms to be familiar with:

  • Malware: Malicious software designed to do damage or gain unauthorized access to a computer system.
  • Brute Force Attack: An automated process where an attacker tries to guess the correct login credentials – a high-risk scenario especially when it comes to administrator accounts.
  • Vulnerabilities: Weak points in your system’s defenses that attackers can exploit to gain unauthorized access or compromise data.

With those concepts in mind, we’ll probe into the functionalities and benefits of WordPress security plugins to empower your defensive strategy.

How a security plugin works within WordPress

Security plugins and their features are as diverse as the threats they ward off, but all share the same overarching purpose: to enhance, extend, and supplement the security capabilities of WordPress. A typical security plugin offers protection against attacks, malware scanning, file monitoring, blocking of suspected malicious networks, and strengthening of login security. Another feature of security plugins is to keep an updated watch on all the components of your website, from the themes to the plugins.

Foundational security best practices

Security plugins are a foundational aspect of the precautions a website owner can take to keep their site secure. Protecting your website is an ongoing investment. Like any worthwhile pursuit, its approach is multi-faceted, requiring consistency over time and a commitment to learning as cyber threats evolve. Here are some best practices to maintain the security of your site:

  • Passwords: These are the keys to the kingdom, and often, they’re kept under the doormat. Eek! Password etiquette stresses the use of strong, unique combinations, changed regularly and stored with care — this applies to both your users and your administrators.
  • Updates and Regular Audits: Themes, plugins, and WordPress core must be kept up to date, and this chore must be supported by regular audits, ensuring that everything within your site is familiar, friendly, and honest.
  • User Roles and File Management: Varying user roles dictate differing levels of permission, and file management practices must be selective, organizing from time to time like removing unused themes and plugins.
  • Secure hosting: Web hosting services that invest in robust security measures are crucial to ward off cyber-attacks. Some hosts offer advanced security options, such as Web Application Firewall and DDoS mitigation. You can read our article about web hosting here.
  • Backups: Regular backups and a swift recovery plan are essential components backstopping the active security measures.

A robust security environment is as much about prevention as it is about quick and thorough resolution of threats. Utilize tools that monitor the user experience while ensuring continual awareness of any possible security lapses.

Our recommended option

WordFence provides real-time threat intelligence by leveraging data from the vast network it protects, and it is swift in detecting and blocking attempted intrusions. Its firewall is a dynamic intelligence system attuned to the behavior of the latest threat landscapes.

Layered security, Two-Factor Authentication, Live Tracking Features, and country-blocking are only a few of the protective tools available with WordFence. It also has an intuitive dashboard and reporting system, ensuring that non-techie folks can understand and respond to potential threats. You can see their packages here. There is no commission here; we’re just fans!


With the constant evolution of cyber threats, it’s crucial to stay informed and proactive in protecting your website. By understanding the core concepts of WordPress security and implementing a security plugin, you can fortify your site against potential attacks. Remember to regularly update your security measures and keep an eye out for any vulnerabilities that may arise. With the right tools and mindset, you can ensure the safety and integrity of your online presence – your visitors, your brand, your peace of mind will thank you!

Security measures are always part of what we consider when building new (or redesigning) websites. Have questions that you’d like to ask an expert? Book a free 30 minute discovery call with us! We’d love to talk through your website needs and questions.

Hi! We’re Zainatain

Zainatain is a web design and conversion rate optimization company fueled by coffee ☕, adventure ✈️, and a healthy dose of humor 🤣. We believe in the power of digital interfaces to accelerate business growth and help our clients achieve their business goals.

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