The days of hiring somebody to design your site and then simply forgetting about it are long since gone. A WordPress site needs maintenance! WordPress is a very stable platform, however themes and plugins can have vulnerabilities which are constantly being fixed by developers. In order for these fixes to take place you must be responsible for making sure the themes and plugins are always up to date. Cybercrime is big business and criminals are developing ever more sophisticated tools to probe & compromise your website. Therefore the following checks should be done on a regular basis.
Click here for a PDF TUTORIAL on how to secure your WordPress website.
1. UPDATE PLUGINS:
When? Whenever they go out of date.
Every time you log into your dashboard (or make sure to log in once a week) if you see a plugin with an ‘Update Now’ notice, click the link and update the plugin.
NOTE: ALWAYS make sure you make a note of the plugin you are upgrading, just in case the upgrade is not compatible and it takes down the site. In this way the plugin can be temporarily disabled and fixed without causing any downtime to the site.
2. BACK UP YOUR SITE
When? Monthly and just before doing a WordPress upgrade.
Make sure you have the site files and database backed up – you should have a back up plugin installed on your site. Click on the backup link and save your backup somewhere safe. If your site goes down it can be brought back very quickly with the backup.
3. UPDATE THE WORDPRESS VERSION
When? Whenever it goes out of date.
WordPress updates it’s software periodically for security reasons. Usually they are small upgrades, but once in a while they are major upgrades (like 4.3 to 4.4). A major upgrade is tricky and if not done correctly can bring the entire site down, so you need to be sure to do the following steps.
4. CHANGE YOUR PASSWORD REGULARLY.
When? Regularly (we recommend once a month) – and keep your password in a secure place.