WordPress has always been a center for cyber-attacks because of its popularity and ease of use. In recent years, WordPress has seen an increase in the number of security vulnerabilities and hacks. Despite this alarming rate, WordPress security is still a widely underappreciated and misunderstood concept. Some business owners are under a common misconception that small businesses are not prone to cyber-attacks. But, a survey suggests that more than 67% of the hacked businesses are small-scale. Henceforth, in this article, we have compiled a list of scanners and steps to follow while scanning your website to enhance security.
You can scan your website here: https://www.getastra.com/website-scanner
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Top 3 WordPress Security scanners
1. Astra Security
Astra is one of the best security firewalls and malware scanners available in the market today. The expert security team of Astra will enable you to look for security loopholes and vulnerabilities in your website.
Source: Astra security
- Scan the core, theme, and plugin files for malware.
- IP & Country blocking.
- 24*7 real-time protection.
- Blacklist monitoring.
- Spam blocking.
- Brute-force protection.
Wordfence is a widely used WordPress security scanner and firewall. It is known for its reliability and excellent customer support.
- Scan themes, plugins, and core files for malware.
- Restrict login attempt for a compromised password.
- Two-factor authentication.
- Traffic monitoring.
- Send alerts for vulnerabilities
The most important feature of WPScan is that it is free of cost. It will inform you of the security issues that your website might be facing. By checking your WordPress website against a vulnerability list stored in their database on a regular basis.
- Scan the themes, plugins, and core files on a daily basis.
- Assessments on admin console of WordPress.
- Notifications via email whenever there is a new vulnerability.
How to clean your WordPress website?
Find and Identify the hack
The first step of cleaning a hack from any website is to first identify and find the hack. Follow these steps for the same:
- Scan your website, You can scan your website from the above-mentioned scanners to find malware and malicious payloads.
- Check the integrity of your website’s core files, The core files are generally modified whenever there is a hack on the website. Therefore, look for the integrity of the files wp-admin, wp-includes, and root folders. The best way to check the files is by using a diff command in the terminal. You can also check them manually via SFTP.
- Check the recently modified files, To check the recently modified files, log in to your server via SSH terminal. Use this command to check the list of all modified files (in the last 15 days): $ find ./ -type f -mtime -15
- Check Google’s diagnostic page, You can use the security tools of Google to check whether your website is hacked or not.
Remove malware from your WordPress website
Never start cleaning your website without taking a full back. Manual removal of malware can be hazardous to the health of your website. This is the reason why plugins and professional help are recommended by each and every security guide.
1. Clean hacked files
If the core and plugin files are infected, you can clean them manually. Just keep in mind to not overwrite the wp-content folder and wp-config.php file.
- Log in using SSH or SFTP.
- Take a complete backup.
- Identify the recent changes(if any) and confirm the information (such as date and time of the change, related user) regarding the changes.
- Restore the official copies of suspicious files from WordPress’s official repository.
- Open the custom files (not in the repository) in a text editor, and manually skim through it while removing suspicious codes.
2. Clean database tables
Follow these steps to clean the hacked database tables of your WordPress store:
- Log in to the admin panel of your database.
- Take a backup before making any changes.
- Search for the suspicious content and then open the table with the concerned content.
- Remove the suspicious content manually.
3. Secure WordPress user account
Remove the suspicious user accounts from your website. While you are at it, find all the inactive users and remove them too. These accounts are always the best place for hackers to hide malicious codes and links.
4. Remove hidden backdoors
Whenever a hacker attacks a website, they try to leave a backdoor to find their way back in. These backdoors are often given similar names to that of genuine WordPress files. Therefore, be sure to look for any changes in the files of your website.
Complete maintenance of a website is not an easy task. From building a website to choosing a reliable security system, one can never be too secure. Hopefully, through this guide, we were able to acknowledge all the important parts of WordPress security. If you think we have missed some, feel free to remind us.