How To Make Your WordPress Blog Safer

How horrible would it be if you woke up tomorrow and your blog was gone. All that hard work you have put into it up in smoke. Ok, so I think we can agree that it’s worth taking a few precautions to ensure our WordPress blogs are as secure as possible. Here are some tips to go about achieving this.

Keep WordPress Current

Keep your WordPress setup up to date. From time to time people find security issues in WordPress. These issues get addressed by the developers of WordPress who then release an update. If you don’t update, you may be vulnerable. WordPress can be a real pain to update, so the more lazy amongst us tend to leave it for a bit. If this sounds like you then maybe you should download WordPress Automatic Upgrade Plugin. It automates the process of backing up and upgrading WordPress.

Backup Your Posts and Comments

Create a folder on your PC and regularly create backups of your blog content. It’s easy enough to do, just go to ”Manage” in your WordPress dashboard, and select “Export”, then click “Download Export File” to save a copy of all your valuable posts, comments and categories. It’s a good idea to name these export files with a date.

Drop The Version String In Your Header.php File

Quick Online Tips explains how displaying the version of your WordPress installation can leave you vulnerable. If the version is left viewable, anyone can easily figure out which version of WordPress you are using just by viewing the source file of your site, then if there is a known flaw in the version you are using you’re in trouble.

To fix this change:

<meta name="generator" content="WordPress 
<?php bloginfo('version'); ?>"
/>

To:

<meta name="generator" content=

"WordPress" />

Put A Blank index.html In /plugins/ Directory

In a default Wordpress installation, anyone can access your WordPress plugin folder to see which plugins you have installed. This is a problem if certain plugins are known to have security issues. The default path is “http://www.yourdomain.com/wp-content/plugins/"

If you type this address in your browser using your WordPress blog’s domain you will see the entire directory with all of your plugins. A method to hide this as describe by Quick Online Tips (and Originally Matt Cutts at WordCamp 2007) is to place a blank file named index.html in the root of your plugin folder. People will no longer be able to view your plugin directory.

Wp-admin Folder

Past versions of WordPress have had vulnerabilities with the wp-admin folder. So for extra tight security Reuben Yau gives a method to Protect the WordPress wp-admin folder. However if the computer you access your blog from has a dynamic IP address assigned by your ISP this won’t work. It may be worth looking into if these sorts of security issues keep you up at night.

Login Lockdown Plugin

Login Lockdown is a plugin that monitors how many times a person tries to log in during a short period of time. If they exceed some key number, LogInLock down will lock them out from logging for some period of time. This will stop those types who will try and guess your user names and passwords.

If you are stuck using a free hosted WordPress blog you should consider blog hosting options, it’s not that expsensive to host your own WordPress blog.

I hope this information has helped you to secure your WordPress blog.

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I created pingable back in 2007 and I still love blogging about Wordpress.