WooCommerce store owners should make security a top priority. Proper WooCommerce security will protect customers’ data from cyber breaches and ensure that the business runs smoothly without being stopped by hackers. WooCommerce stores usually hold large data repositories that could be stolen within minutes.
Usually, WooCommerce websites are built with security in mind. However, the store owners should remain on high alert and install extra security measures to protect their WooCommerce stores against the ill-works of cybercriminals. Hackers will target both small and large websites, no matter the size of your store, know that you are not safe.
But WooCommerce is built with security in mind? So what can make them insecure and vulnerable to attacks? Several circumstances can bring about insecurity to your WooCommerce store:
- You might not know how to handle deployments correctly, and this can lead to mistakes that can give hackers loopholes into your systems.
- You might not know how to configure security issues properly.
- WooCommerce store owners might forget to regularly carry out security maintenances.
Failing to carry out the regular system and software updates could also be fatal.
You ought to understand that the world is speedily evolving, and it might just be a matter of time before you become a victim. Hackers are sophisticated and brave, and they will always come up with new tactics to hit your WooCommerce store. The best solution is to have multiple security measures in place to protect your store from any form of data breaches and insecurities. This article has explained ten of the best tips for your WooCommerce store to safeguard it against cyber threats and vulnerabilities.
1. Keep Every Software and Operating System Updated
WordPress websites usually get frequent updates. These updates come to improve the functionality of WordPress and address the security loopholes that might exist in the existing versions. Undertaking the update is not compulsory but optional. Users can either chose to install the update or ignore it. The repercussion of failing to update your software can be devastating.
Failing to carry out the updates means that you fail to install the security fixes available in the new versions and remain vulnerable to insecurity threats. I advise that you install the latest WordPress update if you want to protect your WooCommerce store from cyber insecurities. You must also ensure that you install the updates once they are released. We should all learn a great lesson from the 2017 Equifax data breach, which occurred because the organization had failed to carry out a software update that had been availed two months before the breach.
2. Use Security Plugins
Several WordPress plugins can help to enhance the security of your WooCommerce store. You do not have to acquire multiple security plugins for your WooCommerce store. I recommend that you obtain one plugin and use it for your website. Using several plugins could cause operational problems, such as breaking down your website. Just pick one of the following WordPress security plugins, and you will be good to go:
- iThemes Security
- Malcare Security Solution
- Sucuri Security
3. Use an SSL Certificate
No website security strategy can be complete without the Secure Socket Layer (SSL) certificate. The SSL certificate is one of the most vital security protocols that every WooCommerce store should have. It plays a significant role in protecting users’ data and communication from interceptions by intruders.
The SSL certificate encrypts the communication between website servers and the users’ browsers. Encryption means that it turns into indecipherable form. To read the communication or access the data, one will be required to have the decryption key. Only the intended recipient will have the right key to decrypt the communication.
Because you collect and store many clients’ data on your WooCommerce store, you need the SSL certificate to protect the data. The information that the SSL certificate will secure includes sensitive details such as credit card numbers, social security numbers, and financial records. Therefore, you must buy an SSL certificate to secure this type of information.
You must acquire your SSL certificate from a trusted certificate provider. Some of the best certificate providers include; Comodo SSL certificate, GlobalSign SSL, RapidSSL, DigiCert, and Thawte.
If you value the security of your WooCommerce store, you should buy and install an SSL certificate today. There are different types of SSL certificates such as Domain Validation (DV) SSL certificate, Extended Validation (EV) SSL certificate, and Organization Validation (OV) SSL certificate. For the sake of your WooCommerce store, you will need to acquire the EV SSL certificate for utmost security and many other benefits.
In addition to an SSL certificate, implementing email protection protocols will provide extra security to your domain and emails. These protocols allow you to check your DMARC, DKIM and SPF records to make sure no one is sending phishing emails on your behalf.
4. Use Strong Passwords
Most data breaches and website hacks today are a result of weak passwords. Unfortunately, most website owners usually ignore the essence of strong and unique passwords. If you want your WooCommerce store to withstand attempts such as brute force attacks and dictionary attacks, then you first need to implement strong passwords.
There are features that your passwords must have to be classified as strong passwords. First, you must ensure that you create long passwords. The password should also be complex. A complex password has combined numbers, lowercase letters, capital letters, and special characters such as hyphens and stars. A hacker will find it difficult to break through such a password.
It would be best if you also were mindful of how you store the passwords. You must avoid writing down the passwords or having your browsers store the password. All a hacker will have to do to access the passwords is to access these sources. You can consider using password manager tools to manage all your passwords.
5. Choose a Reliable and Secure Hosting
Hosting providers could make or break your WooCommerce store. It would be best if you did not rush into choosing a hosting provider. It would be best if you took your time to do your homework. Research on the security standards of the host and ensure that the hosting is using server-level security. You should avoid using a shared hosting platform, choosing a dedicated hosting would be the best option as you own the server and its fully secured. An attack on one site on the platform could be detrimental to other sites within the platform.
6. Change the “Admin” User Name
Using commonplace user names such as “admin” or “store name” could have some security repercussions. So instead, you should change the admin username and combine it with a hard-to-guess password. That way, you will be getting hackers off the radar.
Changing the admin user name is not an arduous task. First, you have to create a new admin user, log in with that account and delete the old account. The first step to doing this is to log in to your WordPress admin. You will then have to navigate to the user and then on Add New. Here, you will have to create a new account with a different user name. With this account, you will need to assign the administrator role. You will then log out from the old account, sign in with the new account and delete the old account.
7. Enable the Two-Factor Authentication
Passwords alone can never be enough to protect your WooCommerce store from unauthorized access. This is why you need an extra authentication step. Two-factor authentication sometimes referred to as multiple-factor authentication, is a perfect way to safeguard your WooCommerce store against unwanted intruders.
With the two-factor authentication, after using the user name and the password, to successfully sign in, the user will be required to enter a security code sent to his device via email or as a text message, without the code, the login process cannot be completed. Apart from using a security code, the two-step authentication process can also use other procedures such as biological characteristics like fingerprint IDs and facial recognitions. To strengthen the security of your WooCommerce store, you need to enable these features.
8. Conduct Regular Data Back-ups
You must regularly conduct frequent data backups for your WooCommerce website. In addition, you should store the backup files at a location that will be easy to retrieve. Cloud storage can be effective in securing backup files.
9. Disable File Editing
If a hacker gains access to your WordPress accounts, the hacker should not edit or change anything. This is why you have to disable file editing from the WordPress admin board. Disabling file editing is an easy step. All you have to do is to add the following code in the wp.Config.php file define( ‘DISALLOW_FILE_EDIT’, true );
10. Limit Logins Attempts
Brute force attacks can easily break your WooCommerce website. However, limiting the number of login attempts can help stop this. In addition, you should configure your system in such a way that, after several login attempts, the user should not go on. This will help prevent unwanted people from guessing their way into your WooCommerce store.
If you own a WooCommerce store, know that you are not secure unless you take the appropriate measures to secure the site. This article has given you ten of the best WooCommerce security tips that will help you safeguard your store. It would help if you implemented all of them to fortify your security walls. The more the security measures, the safer your WooCommerce store will be.