Is WordPress A Secure Platform?
WordPress has been around for a very long time and is extremely popular, powering almost 30% of the web. As a consequence, when a vulnerability or successful attack on a prominent website becomes big news – WordPress can become the scapegoat. At Hampshire IT Solutions (HITS) we feel this can result in WordPress being given an unfair reputation for poor security.
Why We Use WordPress
It’s our sincere belief that with the right setup in terms of hardening the core system, the right hosting platform and proactive ongoing maintenance, WordPress can be made as secure as any CMS available today.
There are two key reasons that news of successful attacks are not representative of WordPress as a secure CMS:
- WordPress has an open system for plugin and theme development, and the vast majority of vulnerabilities are actually to do with plugins and themes rather than the core system. That is why we limit the number of plugins we use, and we only use plugins that are well-used, well-maintained and regularly updated. We also rarely use WordPress themes as the majority of our sites are coded from scratch.
- A major cause of problems has been when a website has not been updated after a security patch is released. As you know this will be true of any piece of software – if a system isn’t kept up-to-date it will be vulnerable to attack. WordPress introduced auto updates a couple of years ago, so security patches are added to a WordPress installation automatically as soon as they are released. This has been very helpful but it is still very important to work with a WordPress agency that can keep plugins up-to-date, make more major WordPress updates, and proactively monitor the security set up of the site.
Fundamentally, any large CMS (or piece of software) is going to occasionally contain bugs that lead to security vulnerabilities. The important thing is that there is an infrastructure for finding and dealing with these vulnerabilities in as short a time as possible. WordPress is actually in a fantastic position in that regard. Since it is so popular and well-used it is highly likely that vulnerabilities will be found by the community before a hacker, and when a vulnerability is found there is a community of hundreds of developers supporting WordPress, so it will be patched quickly via an update of the system.
How We Secure Our WordPress Sites
There are a lot of steps that can be taken to ensure a secure WordPress setup, which can be fine-tuned to suit your priorities. As standard we ensure the following:
- All user accounts have strong passwords, and only have access to what they need
- Disable non-required functionality, such as WordPress comments & emoji support
- Install security auditing and logging software that tracks usage
- Install an SSL certificate
Additional Measures To Consider
- Locking down the Admin area to whitelisted IP addresses only (so only people located in your location can access the backend of the site)
- Two factor authentication for all users
- Use a Web Application Firewall such as Cloudflare or Sucuri – the former offers additional performance boosts as well
- Implement other server-side measures such as a Content Security Policy and HTTP Strict Transport Security
Finally, it’s worth pointing out that WordPress is used by a huge number of global brands, including a few that are obvious targets for attack. WordPress is utilised by the following large companies; The Times, Walt Disney Corporation, New York Post, Time magazine, Quartz and many more.
How Can We Help
To find out more about how HITS works with WordPress and how you can benefit from our cost-effective and efficient website and CMS solutions please feel free to contact us!
HITS – A Creative Web Design Agency based in Hampshire
Established in 2010, HITS works with a broad range of dynamic local and regional businesses. We have extensive experience in Website Design, Ecommerce, Graphic Design and SEO Services. We’re all about providing creative solutions that give small and medium-sized companies the chance to become big companies. As our clients grow, we grow. We love what we do and we couldn’t consider doing anything else.
If you would like to find out more then please contact us on 01264 316141 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org