By Gil Vidals, , HIPAA Blog, Resources

WordPress is the world’s most popular open-source content management system (CMS). As such, it is also the most frequently attacked CMS. It is vital, therefore, to understand how to make your WordPress site more secure. Keeping in mind the following 3 concepts will go a long way toward meeting that goal.

Secure WP Access

The first and most obvious step is to make sure your passwords are secure.

The most common type of attack is simply obtaining someone’s username/password combination. Easy to guess passwords like ‘password’ and ‘opensesame’ should be avoided. This will make hacking your password much more difficult, and mitigate most attacks you might face.

Least Privilege Principle

As a second precaution, any plugins or users created should have permissions assigned based on the Least Privilege Principle.

The Least Privilege Principle states that each person or process should only have access to the resources it needs, and nothing else. If you follow the Least Privilege Principle, even if a user or plugin is compromised, it will only have access to a limited set of resources. This will help prevent serious damage to your system, or someone from gaining access to sensitive information.

Defense in Depth

The last precaution we’ll mention (though certainly not the least overall) is to think about Defense in Depth. Defense in Depth is the idea that the security of your system should actually have multiple layers.

The advantage here is that each layer of security can address the shortfalls of that layer. For example, the use of two-factor authentication to sign on to a system prevents a compromised username/password combination and protects both the environment and the user.

Keeping these 3 concepts in mind as you develop your WordPress site – secure passwords, the Least Privilege Principle, and Defense in Depth – will help stop most unauthorized attempts to access your site.

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