At least 45 million websites are powered by WordPress, and it’s for this reason, it has become a target for hackers who want to cause disruption to service, steal information, or engage in other illegal activities. This is why you should take a close look at the security of your website. Even if you don’t know how to check your WordPress security audit-log for intrusion threats, you shouldn’t get worried since there are powerful plugins that can check that for you.
What is a Security Plugin and What Role Does it Play?
So, what really is a security plugin? Well, this is a tool that helps you defend your site against malicious traffic, hackers and malware. To use a security plugin, you’ll have to choose the best one from the many that are available, install and activate it on your website. Generally, a security plugin should be able to carry out these three important chores: scan, clean and protect your website against unauthorized attacks.
This is a meticulous process that entails checking the presence of malware on your WordPress website. A powerful security plugin should be able to complete this task quickly and in an efficient manner.
After a malicious code is detected on your website after cleaning, a cleaner will be required to remove this code. A moderately powerful cleaner should be able to do the job perfectly.
A good WordPress security plugin should be able to offer solid protection to your website. Prevention is always better than to wait until when your website is attacked before you install a WordPress security plugin.
How to Determine the Best WordPress Security Plugin
With the long list of security plugins for WordPress that are available, how do you choose the best one? It’s imperative to look out for some features that every powerful security plugin must offer. Here are some of the key considerations that you must look at when choosing the best security plugin for WordPress.
- The WordPress plugin should be capable of detecting the presence of malware in your database and files.
- Must scan without exerting undue pressure on website resources.
- Should be able to get rid of malware instantly.
- It should be able to provide unlimited cleanups.
- Login-page protection.
- Excellent customer support.
- Website-hardening measures.
- Must be capable of managing multiple sites from a single dashboard.
- Powerful firewall protection that blocks malicious traffic.
Top WordPress Security Plugins for 2020
This is certainly the most powerful and fastest plugin for detecting and removing malware. This plugin was developed by a company known as BlogVault and has been around for some time now. The intelligent scanner that this plugin comes with is capable of detecting the most complex malware and can point to their location accurately.
What’s more, is that it doesn’t slow down your website while running a scan. This tool is known to be a comprehensive WordPress scanner and allows you to manage every website security task from the admin WordPress. It also allows you to receive custom scheduled reports about your website security.
Here are the key MalCare features:
- Removes malicious script instantly.
- Provides a robust login protector and web application firewall.
- Offers easy website-hardening features.
- Uptime and performance monitoring
- White labeling solution.
- The single dashboard allows for multiple site management.
- Restore and backup facilities available.
What are its Limitations?
MalCare doesn’t offer scanning, cleaning, and protection to websites that have been built locally on your computer. Also, this plugin doesn’t provide two-factor authentications, but the developer said they are working on it.
Price: MalCare is available in free version and also in premium, which starts at $99/year for a single site.
Are you looking for a security plugin that does complete scanning of files and point out the ones that have been hacked? Wordfence security can do just that! After detecting hacked files, this plugin removes them. It also provides superior protection to your login pages and also protects your website via a powerful firewall.
Nonetheless, this plugin is also able to track your web traffic in real-time and has an interesting tool that displays traffic movements on your website in real-time. With this feature, you’ll be able to see traffic as they come to your WordPress site.
Here are the features that Wordfence Security offer:
- Hacked file-removal.
- WordPress-security scanning.
- WordPress security-firewall.
- Live traffic-monitoring.
- Login-page protection.
- Detects and repairs corrupted files
- Blocks visitors by the country.
- Website security-audit.
- Single dashboard.
- Wordfence dashboard.
Limitations: This plugin uses more of the server’s resources while running and this may slow down your website.
Price: The pro version starts at $99/year for a single website.
Sucuri protects websites that are not just built on WordPress, but also Magento and Drupal, among others. One way that intruders inflict damage to your website is by carrying out malicious modification in your domain name servers and Sucuri helps to monitor any suspicious activity and alert you if any suspicious activity is noticed.
Also, you can rely on this plugin to provide your website with a powerful firewall which helps in blocking common hacking attempts. This firewall is also helpful in boosting the performance of your website. Moreover, if by chance is blacklisted by Google, Sucuri will request Google to remove the blacklisting.
Here is the amazing list of features that Sucuri offer:
- DNS monitoring.
- Firewall security.
- Google blacklist removal.
- Malicious script-removal.
- Website malware scanner.
- SSL certificate-detection.
- WordPress website monitoring.
- Sucuri’s Dashboard is located Inside the WP Admin-Dashboard.
Limitations: This plugin’s scanner is considered a remote one, so it only detects malware that the browser can see, not those hidden ones. Moreover, this plugin doesn’t have an agile response to emerging issues and this may lead to frustrations as well as an escalation of issues on the part of the users.
Price: With Sucuri, there are both free a d paid version. The premium version starts at $199 for one website, per year.
iThemes Security was known as Better WP Security sometime back and is accessible for free. One key highlight of this security widget is that it provides 30+ security features. It’s capable of providing superior protection against brute-force attacks by bots and hackers trying to guess your website login credentials with the intent of gaining access to your website.
- Provides superior protection against hackers and bots.
- It has an away mode feature that logs your dashboard out when you leave it for long without logging out.
- This plugin enforces the use of a stronger password, which makes the job of a hacker hard.
- Robust malware scanner for your website.
- Generates a security report for your website.
- Superior WordPress login protection.
- Website-hardening measures for your WordPress website.
- Provides a central dashboard for numerous websites.
- iThemes dashboard.
Limitations: This plugin doesn’t have an in-built scanner or antivirus and uses Sucre’s SiteCheck. If malware is detected and you want to remove it, you’ll have to contact Secure. This tool drains lots of your server resources while you are using it, and this can have a negative impact, especially when its hosted on a shared WordPress server.
Price: iThemes is available in both free & premium version. The pro version price starts from $80/year for a single website.
SiteLock is another reputable security plugin for WordPress and its approach to website security is rather interesting. They offer automated service, which means that scanning as well as malware cleaning occurs on its own. You will not have to enable it manually. Any security-related vulnerability that may develop in WordPress core is fixed automatically by this amazing plugin, without you doing it manually.
Here are the key SiteLock features:
- Offers automated core-vulnerability patching.
- SiteLock provides automated virus removal service.
- Powerful WordPress malware scanner.
- Superior DDoS scanner for WordPress.
- SiteLock dashboard.
- Web application firewall for WordPress.
Limitations: In some instances, this plugin has failed to detect malware right on time, and has also failed to get rid of malware code in full. Also, this plugin has received a negative rating among website users because many of them believe that it employs deceptive billing strategies. The users believe that this plugin doesn’t offer transparent billing.
Price: SiteLock is available in free and also in the premium version. A plan for a single website starts from $ 99.99 per year.
SecuPress easily stands out of the pack thanks to its gorgeous dashboard. It is one of the most attractive and eye-catching plugins in the lot today. It is capable of disabling XML-RPC, which is a WordPress feature that makes it prone to hacking. Website login is another area that’s mostly targeted by hackers, and so it’s imperative that you protect it. By using SecuPress, you will be able to put in place protective measures, such as preventing registration of new users and other related chores.
Here are the features that SecuPress offer:
- Gorgeous SecuPress dashboard.
- WordPress-security checking.
- Firewall protection & IP blocking.
- Website-page login protection.
- Blocks visitors by the country.
- WordPress website hardening.
- White-label solution.
- Complete WordPress backup.
Limitations: SecuPress is awfully expensive. In case you want their team to configure the widget for you, then you should prepare to pay an additional $100. In case they find malware on your website; you’ll pay a one-time cleaning fee of $160. Another problem is that the support team is also not agile and responsive.
Price: SecuPress security widget has a core version that’s free, but the paid version is priced starting at $65 per year for a single website.
WordPress site owners who are looking for a plugin to help them put in place excellent basic website security will find this plugin to be an amazing option. All-In-One WP Security & Firewall provides several ways to help fix vulnerabilities that exist on WordPress.
This widget will always scan through your website looking for holes, and when any is found, these holes get patched quickly. This plugin also has a list which it will check your website against. Any time a scan is done, the results are shown on a section known as Security Strength Meter, and also suggests some important remedial actions.
Here are the features that All-In-One WP Security & Firewall offer:
- All in one firewall & WP security dashboard.
- It is able to block visitors per IP address.
- Website maintenance mode is available.
- Protection against brute force login attack.
- User account maintenance.
- Automated WP scanner.
- User account maintenance.
Limitations: It’s been noticed that some WordPress plugins and themes conflict with this security plugin. Enabling its advanced features breaks the website. In many instances, after the firewall is enabled, admins are locked out of their websites, and as a result, this plugin has become a source of immense frustration.
Price: The premium plan is priced, starting at :9.95/month for 1 website, while the core is free.
BulletProof Security helps to add a number of basic security features to your website. However, this security plugin, which has been around for almost a decade requires you to configure it properly. It logs out users who leave their dashboards for long and this ensure that someone else don’t gain access to the site. Moreover, this plugin uploads a folder under lock & key, so nobody will access it, view or execute ant task using the uploaded folder. It provides diff tools that allows you to see the chances that have occurred in your database in case someone hacks your website.
Here are the features that BulletProof Security offer:
- BulletProof Security-dashboard.
- Firewall protection for WordPress.
- Specific files-upload protection.
- Login page monitoring and protection.
Limitations: This WordPress security plugin has a complex dashboard and may take you sometime before you can comfortably find your way around. When uninstalled, this plugin leaves behind some database tables and folders, making your website slow.
Pricing: BulletProof Security offers both free and premium versions. The paid plan is priced starting at $69.95/year for one website.
The above list of WordPress security plugins represents the most commonly used, feature rich and affordable security plugins for WordPress that you can use to safeguard your website against malicious attacks. These plugins offer both free and premium versions, and the free versions mostly offer provide scanning and a few measures that can help prevent hacking.However, if you want to implement a robust scanning and cleaning measures, you’ll have to be a paid member.
It’s also good to know that each plugin approaches website security differently. You’ll find that Sucuri comes top with its advanced firewall and site performance, while MalCare takes the apex slot because of its unique and comprehensive approach to website security. It also helps you implement website hardening with just a single button click.