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When Did You Last Perform A WordPress Security Audit?

November 13, 2017

Nick Bell

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Did you know that cyber attackers are on your front doorstep every day, testing the resolve of your WordPress website security and looking for possible weaknesses?


It’s true. Cyber attackers are nothing new, of course, but the broadening of our online world has certainly resulted in an increased number of cyber attacks on websites. In most instances, these cyber attacks are performed by bots which, having carried out an audit, will decide which WordPress accounts to attack. It may be slightly concerning to hear that probes are auditing your website on a daily basis, but to ensure adequate security, it’s beneficial to understand the reality of the situation.

With WordPress arguably being one of the largest online platforms in the world, the provider takes security extremely seriously. There are tools available to users to ensure that a high level of security is maintained.


How to catch cyber attackers

It is near impossible to stop a hacker from testing your website security. Even in the case of placing a ban on a particular IP, the attacker can simply change their IP address and start over. Furthermore, the actual probes will use different servers, meaning they are even more difficult to detect. Incredibly, it is said that the average probe will make in excess of forty attempts to test your website security. The trick to catching these probes is to run a security audit on your WordPress account.

Which WordPress scanner do I use for an audit?

There are many WordPress plugins which offer the same service, although the effectiveness of each one is entirely different. As a rule, the WordPress Virus Scanner is a reliable plugin which detects even the most minor malicious activity. Having scanned every database and file in the account, it can point to the exact files which have been used by hackers and naturally, saves an incredible amount of time which would have otherwise been spent searching for malware.

That being said, even a manual search can prove almost impossible since hackers can easily disguise malware as legitimate code. Spam comments are easily caught but when hidden within the CSS of a WordPress account, it is pretty much impossible for an end user to detect.


What do I do if I find malicious content?

If you do encounter any malicious or strange files within the system after running a scan, you can check with the hosting provider to confirm that they are not supposed to be there.

While the thought of this process may be quite frustrating, the task is very simple with the help of a decent plugin. In fact, these plugins take just a few minutes to scan and when performed on a weekly basis, provide peace of mind to the end user who can rest assured there is nothing sinister going on with their WordPress account.