It’s hacked. Yes, I’m talking about your WordPress website. No, I’m just kidding, but it wouldn’t be a joke anymore if your website has a plugin vulnerability. WordPress vulnerability is like an open invitation welcoming a hacker to attack your website. WordPress developers constantly work to keep hackers at bay. However, the security mistakes users make will catch the hackers’ eye.
To prevent this from happening, we must always work towards ridding of all website security issues. Did you know that WordPress plugins can also provide a chance for hackers to attack your website? But not all plugins are harmful, so you do not have to shun all of them. But how do you know which ones to use? How do you know if you are using secure plugins? A curious mind does not like having unanswered questions, so I’ll answer all those questions in this article.
How Can Plugin Vulnerabilities Aid Hackers?
WordPress users love the assistance of plugins, and it can be scary to know that plugins can cause vulnerabilities to a website. But, we all know that there’s always a way around an issue. Before we learn how to avoid WordPress plugin exploits, let’s understand how hackers benefit from these vulnerabilities.
- Hackers can add links to your website to improve their SEO rankings.
- They can redirect your visitors to a different website.
- They can use your resources for spamming, phishing, and DDoS attacks.
- They can embed malware on your website.
What To Do If You Find Out That A Plugin Is Vulnerable?
If you found that a specific plugin on your website is vulnerable, the first thing you need to do is let the developers know about it. However, fixing an issue can take up to 48 hours.
Meanwhile, while the developers work on it, you can disable the plugin. If you are not using a premium plugin and the update is taking more time than expected, you can complain about it on the wordpress.org support forum. Until the update is released, you can rely on an alternative plugin.
How To Protect Your Website From Plugin Vulnerabilities
You can refer to the following steps to protect your website from the WordPress plugins vulnerabilities:
Use A Security Plugin
Isn’t it ironic how a plugin can save you from plugin vulnerabilities? But, as I’ve earlier mentioned, not all plugins pose a threat. So, we can rely on a security plugin to help protect your website from plugin vulnerabilities. However, it is a must to use reputable and reliable security plugins like the Hide My WP.
WordPress security plugins always prove their worth by evading all kinds of cyber-attacks. There are a plethora of options for security plugins from which you can pick the best you deem. Install a security plugin and keep away modern-day attacks from your website.
Refer To WPSCan vulnerability database
The WPScan vulnerability database can help you find out all the plugins that have vulnerabilities. Anytime you want to install a new plugin, you can refer to this database and see if you are making the right choice. You can also search plugin by name and know it is on the vulnerability list.
If it isn’t, you’re good to go. However, please make sure if the developers resolved the issue that put the plugin on the list. If so, you can install that plugin with ease. But, if you find that the plugin you use is on the list and there are no security updates for a long time, you can delete that plugin.
Manage Your Plugins Better
A plugin is not always in the wrong to be creating vulnerabilities. Not taking better care of your WordPress plugins can also result in security issues. You can do the following to avoid creating plugin vulnerabilities:
Update Plugins Regularly
Do you ever forget to update applications on your mobile? I guess not, so your website plugins should not be treated any differently. The developers work hard on the plugins to give you the best experience and ensure that you face no issues.
However, most users choose to ignore the updates for reasons one can not fathom. While others procrastinate updating them(I can relate to it). But website security is not something to be taken lightly, so prioritize that your plugins are up-to-date because updates carry fixes to known vulnerabilities.
Install Reputable Plugins
Installing plugins from a reputed seller is of critical value. It ensures that the plugins are legitimate and authentic. We can also count on the developers to fix issues that pop up at any time. You can look through the ratings, reviews on the product, and customer support to know what you are making the right decision.
Sellers might lie, but the customers won’t. Users also might lean towards pirated versions of premium plugins because they might come for free. But that’s a big no from me. These plugins can very much harm your website.
Refer to this article to learn more about Why You Must Avoid Nulled WordPress Plugins & Themes.
Avoid Using Abandoned Plugins
Abandoned plugins are the ones the developers do not work on anymore. If you notice that the update to a plugin is not out for a very long time, it’s a sign that you should stop using that plugin because it can be carrying a lot of security issues and vulnerabilities. The best plugins will always provide updates to the users so that all the security issues get fixed. Here is an example of updates provided by the Hide My WP plugin developers.
Uninstall Unnecessary Plugins
You might’ve once installed a plugin that you thought would be useful but don’t use it anymore. Some people have so many unused plugins similarly and do not have it in their heart to delete them.
I can understand the sentiment, but it’s not a good practice to hoard a lot of plugins on your WordPress. Managing so many plugins can be extremely difficult, and even if a single plugin issue goes unnoticed, it can be troubling your website’s security.
Relevant Article: How Many WordPress Security Plugins Do I Need?
It is nightmarish to escape hackers but not when you have the Hide My WP on your side. Here are some of the best features of the Hide My WP security plugin to aid you with your website security:
- It can hide your website Login Page from hackers.
- You can escape brutal attacks like XSS, SQL injection, CSRF, Command Injection, and more with the help of a firewall.
- You can instantly change anything in the source code your website
- Using this plugin, you can change the WordPress permalinks.
- It helps evade spam.
- It helps hide your website from online detectors and bots.
Plugins assist WordPress users in countless ways, but they can harm your websites too. However, it’s your responsibility to prevent plugin vulnerabilities and secure your website from hackers. While vulnerabilities are a headache, you can always fix them. The solutions to plugin vulnerabilities are simple and easy to follow, so you can relax after implementing them on your website.