Do you want to add a security plugin to your site to protect it from malicious attacks?
Every WordPress website should have a security plugin actively monitoring the site around the clock. This is because all websites are susceptible to various online threats such as hacking, malware, and phishing attacks.
A security plugin acts as a shield, helping to detect and prevent these threats. They also identify potential weaknesses in your WordPress installation, themes, or plugins and suggest ways to resolve them.
In this guide, we’ll reveal the security plugins that have all the essential features you need to protect your site.
What You Need to Know About WordPress Security Plugins
Security plugins are essential for enhancing the security of your WordPress website. They typically focus on specific aspects of security, such as malware scanning, firewall protection, or login attempt monitoring. We recommend that every website have a reliable security plugin actively monitoring it.
Over the years, we’ve tried and tested different security plugins, and in this guide, we’ve listed out the different plugins and solutions that are absolutely essential to keep your site secure. After that, we’ll explore more options or alternatives that you can use.
One important thing you need to keep in mind is that these plugins are not a complete security solution on their own. They will not cover all potential vulnerabilities that you need to avoid This can include using weak passwords, installing nulled plugins that can infect your site with malware, or getting a free web hosting plan that puts your site’s data at risk.
Relying solely on a security plugin might give website owners a false sense of security. Users may neglect other crucial security measures, assuming the plugin will handle everything.
With that in mind, let’s get started with the most essential thing that should be a top priority and that’s using a secure web host.
Get a Secure Web Hosting Plan
To host a WordPress site, you’ll be using a web hosting plan from providers such as Bluehost, GoDaddy, or HostGator, and so on.
If you’re using a reputable hosting provider, you don’t have anything to worry about. But you need to be careful if you’ve subscribed to a hosting plan from not-so-good hosts.
Choosing a secure hosting provider forms the foundation that you can build on by adding other security measures, such as using secure coding practices, employing security plugins, and regularly updating your website’s software.
Plus, secure hosting providers have strong defenses against hacks and cyber attacks. They implement measures to stop malicious activities before they can harm your site.
Our top 3 recommendations for secure web hosting are:
- Bluehost – Officially recommended by WordPress.org, they offer affordable hosting plans and reliable service. You malware scanning, secure online payments, and domain privacy.
- Hostinger – One of the most secure hosting providers with features like vulnerabilities & malware scanner, enhanced DDoS protection, and secure access manager. Plans include free domain WHOIS privacy protection.
- SiteGround – Another fantastic web host known for ultra-fast web hosting. Plans come with enhanced security features such as the AI anti-bot system.
All 3 hosting providers regularly update their server software to patch security vulnerabilities and ensure a secure hosting environment.
They also offer firewall protection to monitor and filter incoming and outgoing traffic, helping to block malicious activities and unauthorized access attempts.
You get automated daily backups for your website. This feature is crucial for data recovery in case of unexpected events, such as data loss or security incidents.
Added to this, every hosting plan comes with free SSL certificates. SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) ensures that data transmitted between your website and users is encrypted, adding a layer of security.
Whichever one you choose from these 3, you’ll know your site is in safe hands.
Now, let’s look at the best security plugins that you can install on your website.
Best WordPress Security Plugins
Sucuri is a powerful security solution for keeping your website safe from online dangers. It works like a protective shield, stopping harmful traffic before it reaches the website.
Sucuri provides a cloud-based website application firewall (WAF) that acts as a barrier between your website and potential online threats. This server-side firewall helps filter and block malicious traffic before it reaches your server, preventing DDoS attacks SQL injection, and cross-site scripting. It also comes with brute force protection.
This plugin also regularly checks for any bad code on the website and quickly gets rid of it, making sure the site stays clean and secure. It keeps a close eye on the site all the time, sending instant alerts if there’s anything suspicious happening.
The Sucuri security plugin provides a user-friendly dashboard that allows you to easily manage and monitor your website’s security settings. The interface is designed to be accessible to users with varying levels of technical expertise.
You get advanced features like IP blocklist, country blocking, CDN, limit login attempts, and an activity log.
In the event of a security incident, the Sucuri team offers incident response services to help investigate and remediate the issue. They’ll also ensure that all vulnerabilities and backdoors are closed so that it doesn’t happen again. Their support team is known for being responsive and knowledgeable.
Sucuri has a free WordPress security scanner available in the WordPress plugin repository. This free plugin is great for beginners who are just getting started with website building and don’t necessarily have the budget to spend.
The premium version starts at $199 per year. If you’re running a WooCommerce site, you definitely want to invest in a robust security system like Sucuri Pro.
JetPack by WordPress.com offers a suite of security features designed to enhance the protection of WordPress websites. This includes real‑time backups, a web application firewall, malware scanning, and spam protection.
The malware scanner feature checks your website for malicious code. If any issues are detected, Jetpack provides guidance on how to address and resolve them.
The plugin includes basic backup and restore functionality. It allows you to create backups of your website, providing an additional layer of data protection.
Jetpack also helps protect your site against brute force attacks by limiting login attempts. This feature helps prevent unauthorized access by blocking repeated login attempts from a single IP address.
Added to this, Jetpack supports secure authentication methods, including optional two-factor authentication (2FA). Enabling 2FA adds an extra layer of security to user logins.
There’s a spam filtering feature that helps protect your site’s comments and forms from spam submissions. This helps maintain the integrity of user interactions on your website.
The plugin monitors changes to your WordPress files and alerts you if any unauthorized modifications are detected. This can be crucial for identifying and addressing potential security issues.
It also tracks 404 errors on your site and can automatically lock out suspicious users who generate too many of these errors. This feature helps prevent malicious activities.
SolidWP includes a notification center that keeps you informed about important security events and alerts. This ensures that you are promptly notified of any potential threats or issues.
Like other plugins on this list, includes malware scanning tools to check your website for malicious code or malware. If issues are detected, SolidWP provides options for remediation.
You also get protection against brute force attacks by limiting login attempts and enforcing strong password policies. This helps prevent unauthorized access to your WordPress site.
What stands out is its Away Mode feature. This lets you lock down your WordPress dashboard during specified hours. This can be useful for preventing unauthorized access during inactive periods.
Added to that, SolidWP also comes with backups, SSL certificate integrations, and a security dashboard.
Malcare is a powerful security plugin, particularly for malware infections. It provides a one-click malware removal feature which is helpful if your site is infected and you want to clean it up fast.
The plugin regularly scans your website for malware and other security vulnerabilities. In fact, its scanning algorithm aims to detect complex and hidden malware patterns, providing comprehensive protection. Plus, MalCare provides continuous monitoring of your website. You’ll get real-time alerts and notifications for any security events or potential issues.
Next, MalCare includes a firewall that blocks malicious traffic before it reaches your website. This helps prevent brute force attacks and other types of security threats.
Aside from this, the plugin also comes with login protection features to prevent unauthorized access. Users can also enable Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) to add an extra layer of security to their login process. It also uses login anomaly detection to identify suspicious login patterns. This helps in detecting potential security threats early on.
The plugin includes a centralized dashboard that allows users to manage multiple websites from a single place. This also makes managing multiple websites much easier.
Malcare has a free version that comes with a real-time firewall and login protection for 1 site. It also has security tools like a daily malware scanner, plus vulnerability and uptime monitoring.
The paid versions start at $149 per year to $2999 per year. This range of pricing caters to just about anyone including entrepreneurs, small businesses, large corporates, and agencies. It comes with instant malware removal, incremental backups, activity logs, 1-click staging, and more.
All in One Security includes a security scanner that scans your WordPress installation for vulnerabilities and provides recommendations for improving your site’s security.
It also gives you features to enhance user account security, such as the ability to force strong passwords, monitor user login activity, and detect and block brute force login attempts.
When you install All in One WP Security & Firewall on your site, a firewall is implemented to protect your website against various types of attacks. This includes SQL injection, cross-site scripting (XSS), and other malicious activities.
The plugin provides tools to monitor and protect the file system of your WordPress installation. You’ll get features like file integrity checking to detect unauthorized changes.
Next, this tool comes with database security measures to help protect sensitive data. This may involve the removal of unnecessary information from the database and regular database backup options.
You can also blacklist specific IP addresses to block access from known malicious entities. That way, you can lockdown your site and keep unwanted traffic out.
Added to all this, you can secure WordPress with captcha protection, notifications and alerts, and regular security audits.
Wordfence Security is a widely used security plugin for WordPress websites. It’s quite popular as it offers a free version of the plugin that gives you access to basic website protection.
Wordfence includes a powerful firewall that helps prevent malicious traffic from accessing your website. It filters and blocks suspicious requests, protecting against common security threats.
You have the flexibility to customize firewall settings, including rules and blocking parameters. This allows for tailoring security measures to the specific needs of the website.
It regularly checks your website for signs of malicious code or compromised files. In fact, it runs comprehensive security scans, checking core files, themes, and plugins for vulnerabilities. It also scans for potential security issues in the overall WordPress configuration. If malware is detected, Wordfence provides options for removal.
Wordfence provides features to enhance login page security, including two-factor authentication (2FA), login attempt monitoring, and the ability to block brute force attacks by limiting login attempts.
What stands out about this plugin is that it uses a real-time threat defense feed that provides the latest information about known security threats. This helps the plugin identify and block emerging threats promptly.
You can block specific IP addresses or entire ranges to prevent access from known malicious entities. It also maintains a real-time IP blacklist based on threat intelligence.
Now there’s a live traffic view that allows you to monitor visits and hack attempts in real-time. This gives you valuable insights into your website’s traffic and potential security threats.
Next, Wordfence enables users to block traffic from specific countries if desired. This can be useful for preventing malicious activity originating from certain geographic locations.
Bulletproof Security is a free WordPress security plugin for WordPress security hardening. It includes a range of security features to help protect your website.
BulletProof Security focuses on securing the .htaccess file to enhance the overall security of your website. You get a basic firewall to protect against common web application attacks such as SQL injection and cross-site scripting (XSS).
There’s a maintenance mode feature that allows you to display a maintenance page to visitors while performing website updates or addressing security issues.
Coming to login security, it will automatically log out idle users to enhance security. This prevents unauthorized access if a user forgets to log out. It also includes basic login attempt monitoring and the ability to block brute force attacks.
The plugin includes anti-spam features to help protect against comment spam and form spam. This can help maintain the quality of user interactions on your website.
You can create and restore database backups. Regular backups are essential for data recovery in the event of security incidents or data loss.
If you’re a developer, you can add custom code snippets and configurations to the .htaccess file for advanced users who want to customize security measures.
Bonus: WordPress Plugins to Enhance Security
Really Simple SSL is a free WordPress plugin that automates the process of configuring and activating SSL certificates on your WordPress site.
When a website has SSL, you’ll see a little padlock in the address bar. This tells you the site is secure. It’s like a seal of approval that says, “This website can be trusted.” This is because SSL will keep your personal and sensitive website information, like passwords or credit card numbers, safe from hackers. It’s like a shield that makes sure your details are private.
The Really Simple SSL plugin lets you add SSL to your site for free. This will ensure that when people come to your website, they’re directed through a secure path (HTTPS) instead of a regular one (HTTP).
After configuring SSL, sometimes, there might be elements on your website that are not fully secure. Really Simple SSL helps find and fix those issues, making sure everything on your site is protected.
Duplicator Pro is the best backup and migration plugin for WordPress.
Regular backups are crucial for ensuring that you can restore your site in case of data loss, errors, or security issues.
With this plugin, you can schedule automated backups of your entire WordPress site. You can store your backups in popular cloud storage services like Dropbox, Google Drive, or Amazon S3. This adds an extra layer of security and ensures that your backups are stored off-site.
WPForms is a popular WordPress form builder plugin that includes several anti-spam features to help protect your forms from unwanted submissions.
Forms are a hot spot for spammers and hackers to try to infiltrate your website. With WPForms, every form you create comes with built-in anti-spam features.
WPForms uses a honeypot technique to detect and prevent spam submissions. A hidden field is added to the form that only bots can see. If this field is filled out, the form submission is marked as spam.
It also integrates with Google reCAPTCHA, a widely used and effective tool for preventing spam. By enabling reCAPTCHA, users may be required to check a box to confirm they are not robots before submitting the form.
You can even add a custom CAPTCHA field to your forms. CAPTCHA challenges typically involve entering characters from an image to verify that the user is human.
Akismet is a widely used anti-spam plugin for WordPress that helps prevent unwanted comments and form submissions on websites.
If you have a blog or a website with a comments section where people can share their thoughts. While many visitors have good intentions, some might try to leave annoying or harmful comments. That’s where Akismet steps in—acting like a helpful assistant that sorts through the comments to keep the good ones and filter out the bad ones.
If Akismet thinks a comment is spam, it doesn’t let it show up on your website. And if the plugin ever makes a mistake and marks a real comment as spam (or vice versa), you can review and adjust its decision. This ensures that you have control over what appears on your site.
That’s our list of the best security plugins for WordPress. We hope this list helped you find the best security solutions for your site.
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