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WordPress is a popular free and open source content platform where users can choose different themes based on the user’s preference. This is an “open-source content management system written in PHP and paired with a MySQL or MariaDB database” (Wikipedia). A popular platform means that there is a higher chance of attackers hacking these WordPress sites. To help you understand where the weak spots are, here are the five common WordPress hacks and vulnerabilities that could put a WordPress site in jeopardy.
Brute force attacks are the simplest attacks to gain access to a website by repeatedly entering username and passwords until the attacker is able to get in. A common way attackers use brute force attack in WordPress is “to hammer the wp-login.php file over and over until they get in or the server dies” (WordPress).
Typically people use ‘admin’ as their username which makes it very easy for WordPress sites to get hacked.
How to Prevent Brute Force Attacks?
In either method, the hacker uses an XSS attack to steal or manipulate data which is how the WordPress sites get hacked. As a result it affects the user’s experience on the WordPress site. XSS attacks are common on WordPress Sites because of the plugins; they are extremely complex which means the higher possibility of security issues.
How to Prevent XSS?
To prevent an XSS attack from occurring, you should use data sanitization across the whole WordPress site to make sure that only the appropriate variables are inserted.
Malicious code can be injected into WordPress via an infected theme, outdated plugin or script. Once the code has been injected it could cause mild to serious damages if not handled in a timely manner.
How to Prevent Malicious Code?
The best way to prevent malicious code from being injected is to make sure that you only download WordPress themes and plugins from trusted sources. It is also important to check that the WordPress plugin is up to date as malware typically enters through infected themes and outdated plugins.
SQL injection is a “web security vulnerability that allows an attacker to interfere with the queries that an application makes to its database” (PortSwigger). Performing an SQL injection attack would allow an attacker to view data from the database that they would not normally be able to retrieve. If the SQL query entered is successful, then the attacker has successfully hacked the WordPress site. The hacker can then manipulate the MySQL database and potentially gain admin access to your WordPress account to change the credentials. This is just one way how the WordPress sites get hacked via sql injection.
How to Prevent an SQL injection attack?
Our final WordPress Hack is DDoS Attacks. Distributed denial of service is when a large volume of requests are made to a server which causes the server to be slow and ultimately crash. This kind of an attack is another easy way how WordPress sites get hacked causing reduced performances from the web.
How to Prevent DDoS Attacks?
As WordPress is a popular platform that people use to create their own websites, it is very important to make sure that you take all security measures to keep your site secure. These are the vulnerabilities explained here that show how WordPress sites get hacked. I am sure that there are more vulnerabilities that exist, however these are just some of the common ones that you should keep a lookout for and how to prevent them from occurring.
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