how to keep your blog safer from hack attacks

Keeping your blog safe from attacks should be foremost on your mind, now that you have your blog up and running. Without the proper precautions, it’s easy to become a victim of unscrupulous  people who can’t wait to wreck havoc on all that good work. Once your blog is attacked, it can quickly become a nightmare trying to get back control. This blog that’s less than two weeks old has already had over 2,9,00 attempts! The other one has well over 30,000! Imagine that.  It might end up costing you a lot of people to get this done. In this post, we’ll talk about some simple things you can do to make yourself less susceptible to attacks.

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How to keep your blog safer from malware and hack attacks:

Password:

This is one of the simplest and most effective way to stop hackers. I know it’s convenient to have simple passwords for your blog. I get it, it’s easy to remember, especially nowadays when we are inundated with passwords for everything, and each platform requiring different weird combinations. Enough to drive one crazy. That being said, you still need to choose a very hard to guess password. A lot of times, your blog is subject to brute attacks which means it’s usually a bot trying to hack in. My suggestion is to use a combination of letters, numbers and symbols. If you know another language, use that too instead of English. Do not use your birthday, name or anything easy to guess. I try to use a word that is not in the English dictionary. Here’s an example of a good password –

%diet99Furmei*!

Make sure you can remember it though, and never share with anyone.

Get rid of Admin:

Since every blog starts you off as the Administrator of the blog, you might be tempted to leave it as is. Not a good idea. It makes it easier for the bot to guess your password since half of the job is already done. They would only have to guess the password. Add yourself as a new user and make yourself an administrator so you have control, then go ahead and delete admin all together. Now, they would have to guess both your name and password!. You can take it one step further by using a different name, not the one you use on the posts.

Plugins:

Plugins are a very popular way for hackers to install malware into your blog post and pages. To prevent this, make sure you only:

  • Download from the official WordPress Plugins page
  • Make sure to update your plugins to the latest version as quickly as possible
  • Delete any plugins that are not being used
  • Make sure the plugins are compatible with the version of WordPress you have installed. Look for the check mark

Security Plugins:

This is another way to make sure that you stay secure. There are free as well as premium plugins that you can install.

  • Loginizer has a free and pro version. As discussed in the previous post, this will help prevent brute force attacks. It can also block the IP addresses which is an added bonus.
  • Word fence Security is another popular one for WordPress. They also offer a free and an upgraded version for $39 per year.
  • iThemes Security – another popular WordPress option which prioritizes your safety issues into Top, Medium and Low Priorities.

You might want to play around with all three and see which one works best for you.

Public WiFi means trouble:

Free is not always free!

A lot of times, we are so happy to be in a free wifi zone. This is one of the easiest places for your information to get jacked. Everything from your email to your blog to your sensitive information such as banking details are right for the picking if you log in via a public wifi. To eliminate this, you might want to use a VPN if you absolutely must log in from a public space.

VPN means Virtual Private Network. It basically encrypts your information and you can access the internet securely. There are quite a few VPN companies including ExpressVPN , AviraVPN and HidemyAss. I like the Hola VPN which is available for free on the Chrome browser if you have a Chrome book. I’ve had to use that a lot in the past, especially when watching my favorite shows that were not available in Spain.

Disable Pingbacks:

This is another easy way for hackers to get into your system. By stopping ping notifications, you can up your chances of getting hacked. To disable the ping backs, go to your “dashboard”, then under the “settings”, choose “discussion” and uptick the “Allow Link notification from other blogs (ping backs)”.

Backup your files:

Depending on what sort of hosting plan you have, your files might be getting backed up for you. If not, make sure you have a complete backup of your blog. In case you get hacked and need to set up shop again so to speak, you have everything you need and it’s simply a matter of uploading your files. Have more than one copy, perhaps on a USB stick as well as on your computer and keep it somewhere safe. Get yourself an external hard drive like l did. It prevents tears.

All these precautions are of course useless if you don’t have a computer free of viruses. If your computer gets hacked, they have access not just to your blog information, but to basically everything that you hold dear. You might want to install software on your computer to prevent viruses or malware attacks.

McAfee Anti-Virus software and Avira Antivirus (Free. I use that one) are just a couple of examples of software that you can install on your computer for an overall peace of mind.

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Have l missed anything? Can you think of any other ways to keep your blog or personal information for that matter more secure?

I hope this post has been helpful to you. Please share on social media so it can help others.

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