10 Security Plugins for Protecting WordPress Websites

Though WordPress is by far one of the most secure content management systems (CMS) around, it's popularity makes it vulnerable to attacks. In fact, each day Google blacklists approximately 10,000 websites for suspicious activity, and you had better believe numerous WordPress websites are included on these lists.

Despite the obvious risks, many WordPress website owners fail to worry about their own site's security until something terrible happens. They are then left to deal with the aftermath of a hack attack or malware infection.

Today, we are going to roundup some of the very best WordPress security plugins on the market so that you and your site can rest easy. With a little bit of configuration and some regular monitoring, you can protect your WordPress website from those trying to steal private information, use your website for illegal means, or undo all the hard work you put into your business.

1. AntiVirus

wordpress anti-virus

AntiVirus is a simple plugin that is self-explanatory. Hardening your website against attacks, malware, and spam injections, this security plugin automatically scans your website daily for problems. This includes a scan of both your theme files and database tables.

In the case that your WordPress website has experienced any suspicious activity, AntiVirus is set up to immediately send you a notification informing you of the suspicious activity. This way, you can take action quickly and resolve any potential problems.

Additional features of AntiVirus include:

  • Virus alerts in the admin bar of your website
  • Cleanup after plugin removal
  • Translation ready
  • Manual check of template files available
  • Scheduled scans with prompt email notifications


2. BBQ: Block Bad Queries

bbq wordpress

BBQ: Block Bad Queries is an advanced firewall plugin with multiple features for protecting your WordPress website. However, because BBQ deals solely with firewall protection, it is super lightweight and extremely fast.

To use BBQ, simply install and activate the plugin on your website and let it block your website from malicious URL requests. Checking all incoming traffic and quietly blocking bad requests, this powerful plugin is perfect for those who do not want the hassle of dealing with extensive plugin configurations.

Additional features of BBQ: Block Bad Queries include:

  • Based on 5G/6G Firewall
  • Scans all request types – GET, POST, PUT, DELETE, etc.
  • Compatible with other security plugins
  • Customize blocked strings
  • No configuration necessary


3. iThemes Security

ithemes security

iThemes Security has been a leading WordPress security plugin for some time now. With over thirty ways to secure and protect your website, this plugin works to lock down WordPress, fix common holes, stop automated attacks, and strengthen user credentials. For example, iThemes Security moves the default WordPress login page, enforces super-strong passwords, and blocks users after too many failed login attempts.

In addition, this plugin will monitor, detect, and report to you any changes in the filesystem and database that might indicate a compromise. There are plenty of reasons why this powerful plugin is one of the most widely used security plugins.

Additional features of iThemes Security include:

  • Runs a scan for malware and blacklists on your website’s homepage
  • Receive email notifications when a problem persists
  • Hide common WordPress information to prevent information collection
  • Regular website backup
  • Ban those who have attempted other website hacks


4. Sucuri Security


Sucuri Security is a globally recognized security plugin specializing in WordPress security. By automatically scanning your website for suspicious files and malware, this plugin goes one step further in comparing each scan to its original snapshot of your “good” website. Sucuri offers website owners an extensive monitoring log for viewing security breaches, and if something has been compromised, you can easily restore the files back to their original and non-infected state.

Designed as the ultimate security plugin, Sucuri boasts seven key security features: audit logging, file integrity monitoring, remote malware scanning, blacklist monitoring, security hardening, post-hack security actions, and security notifications. Altogether, these seven features are meant to protect your website to the fullest.

Additional features of Sucuri Security include:

  • Removal of WordPress information
  • Restriction of wp-content and wp-includes
  • Verification of security keys
  • Security logs maintained in Sucuri cloud
  • Blocks user after multiple failed login attempts


5. VaultPress


VaultPress is a premium security plugin designed by the talented team at Automattic. Secure, reliable, and extremely user-friendly, this plugin offers exceptional backup and security services to WordPress website owners. Scanning your site frequently for viruses and malware, VaultPress offers a one-click removal system once a compromise is discovered.

Moreover, you can schedule or conduct real-time backups of your website to easily restore it should your website become compromised beyond repair. The best thing about this feature is that you do not need the help of your host in order to restore your website when using VaultPress’ backup files, thus making the entire restoration process a lot easier.

Additional features of VaultPress include:

  • Site migrations (transfers or duplicates) with one-click
  • Automatic spam blocking
  • Safekeeper Support for dealing with compromises
  • Daily backups
  • 30-day backup archives

PRICE – Starting at $99/year

6. Security Ninja

security ninja

Security Ninja is a security plugin that literally kicks butt. Performing over forty security tests on your website with one click, this plugin identifies how secure your website is and then proceeds to implement protection measures where the weak spots exist.

Never relinquish control while securing your site with this plugin. Check for vulnerabilities on a regular basis and build your own preventative measures against discovered holes. Security Ninja performs tests such as version hiding, database configuration tests, file permissions, Apache and PHP related tests, and so much more. With this plugin, you can rest assured every aspect of your site is being scanned, monitored, and protected against hackers and malware.

Additional features of Security Ninja include:

  • Prevent 0-day exploit attacks
  • Proactively implement security measures
  • Avoid script kiddie hacks
  • Receive test explanations, documentation, and detailed solutions
  • Test password strength


7. Wordfence Security


Wordfence Security is a comprehensive WordPress security plugin offering website owners firewall protection, malware scans, blocking, live traffic monitoring, login security, and more. As the most downloaded WordPress security to date, this plugin will protect your site inside and out.

Powered by the constantly updated Threat Defense Feed, you can almost guarantee your site will never be hacked. However, if at all your site is compromised, you are immediately notified so you can resolve the issue quickly. In addition, Wordfence Security’s Live Traffic view gives you a glimpse into traffic and hack attempts on your website in real-time.

Additional features of Wordfence Security include:

  • Identify and block malicious traffic before it hits your site
  • Rate limit or block aggressive crawlers, scrapers, and bots during security scans
  • Two-Factor Authentication capability
  • Monitor disc space to prevent hidden DDoS attacks
  • Compatible with major WordPress plugins like WooCommerce


8. All In One WP Security & Firewall


All In One WP Security & Firewall is user-friendly and effective at protecting your website from security risks and vulnerabilities. For example, it provides you with a security point grading system to measure how well your site is being protected in that moment.

In addition, All in One WP Security & Firewall has three security rule levels – basic, intermediate, and advanced. This way, when you experience a compromise that needs fixing, you can apply the appropriate level of protection without sacrificing your website’s functionality and performance.

Additional features of All in One WP Security & Firewall include:

  • Password strength tool
  • Login Lockdown featured based on IP address or too many failed login attempts
  • Manually approve all WordPress user accounts
  • Backup original .htaccess and wp-config.php files
  • Activate multiple firewall protections


9. WP Security Audit Log

WP security audit

WP Security Audit Log keeps an audit trail of all changes made under the hood of your WordPress website. By tracking all of the activity that goes on, you are able to maximize productivity and avoid possible hacker attacks. In addition, identifying possible threats before they become a serious threat to your website can save you a lot of hassles in the long run.

Designed as a more hands on approach to website security, this plugin most notably tracks all of your website users. For example, monitoring user registrations, user roles, and edit attempts to published posts, you can spot security threats quickly and easily resolve them. Lastly, there are activities that will trigger a security alert in an attempt to fully protect your entire website.

Additional features of WP Security Audit Log include:

  • Monitor user logins and logouts
  • Watch those who publish a blog, page, or custom post
  • Track those uploading or deleting files
  • Investigate when posts or pages are trashed or permanently deleted
  • Supervise where users are logging in from


10. BulletProof Security


BulletProof Security offers a comprehensive approach to WordPress site security. For example, enjoy firewall security, login security and monitoring, database security and backup, and more. As a safe and reliable plugin, easily configure BulletProof Security on your website using the one-click setup wizard.

In addition, you can hide plugin folders, log all of your database backups, enjoy front-end and back-end maintenance modes, and even enable an idle session logout feature for those who are spending too much time on your site doing nothing. In the end, this simple but effective security plugin has the features needed to protect your site from unauthorized users.

Additional features of BulletProof Security include:

  • HTTP Error logging
  • UI theme skin changer (3 theme skins)
  • Database backups (full, partial, manual, scheduled, email zip, or cron delete old backups)
  • Auth Cookie Expiration (ACE)
  • .htaccess Website Security Protection




As an added bonus, it is worth mentioning that some managed hosting providers include exhaustive security measures bundled into their hosting services.

Pagely is a managed WordPress hosting provider that takes website security seriously. In addition to the managed hosting services they provide all of their customers, they implement exclusive security procedures to ensure that your website remains uncompromised while under their care. Designed to harden and protect their networks, hardware, and software so your website doesn’t suffer because of attacks, Pagely's PressARMOR focuses on preventing all risks to their customers.

PressARMOR is Pagely's security measure that works to prevent and mitigate attacks against their customers using best security practices such as patching and firewalls. However, the team at Pagely doesn’t stop there. They also insist that all of their staff receive exceptional training and that they continually educate themselves about new security threats and emerging technology to combat such threats.

Additional features of PressARMOR include:

  • Managed web application firewalls
  • Brute force mitigation and rate limiting
  • 2-factor authentication for core services
  • Malware prevention and remediation
  • System wide comment spam prevention

PRICE – Hosting services start at $99/month

Final Thoughts

In the end, taking any measures to protect your website from hackers, malware, and spammers will benefit you and your WordPress website. Do not rely on the security and stability of the WordPress platform to protect you from everything. No matter how strong WordPress is, there is always a chance your website can become compromised.

The damages incurred from failing to implement security measures onto your website are simply not worth it. With so many wonderful WordPress security plugins and services available for you to take advantage of, there really is no excuse for not protecting your hard work and private information.

Have you used any of the above mentioned WordPress security plugins to protect your WordPress website? What steps do you take to protect your WP site? Share with us in the comments what has best worked for you and your website's security.


  1. Paolo F
    Dec 19, 2016 @ 17:16

    I use Shield WordPress Security… it’s free.


    Dec 28, 2016 @ 11:05

    Thank you for the article. It was really helpful.


  3. Andre
    Jan 30, 2017 @ 12:13

    I’ve been using only iThemes Security for quite some time and never had any problem. Having a security plugin is important, but buying a good hosting service is also extremely important to safeguard your website.


    • Kurt @ Themify
      Jan 30, 2017 @ 17:22

      Definitely agree with you :)


  4. Tom Cahill
    Feb 01, 2017 @ 09:33

    Kurt I have a VPS with Bluehost and had a pretty serious hack on all my PHP files.. still going through the recovery of multiple sites..

    When I stitch it all back together out of the cocktail of the free plugs you had recommended I’m sure that more than a few would be overkill, what ones would you go with? Any suggestions would be very cool for my very tired brain : )


    • Nick @ Themify
      Feb 06, 2017 @ 16:10

      We are with LiquidWeb hosting. Have been happy with them so far.


  5. Amit Patel
    Jun 16, 2017 @ 09:14

    Really a great list of WordPress Security plugins. I was aware of some of the security plugins like bulletproof, All In One WP Security, Wordfence, Security Ninja, Sucuri etc. But others are very unknown for me. We mostly use Wordfence or All In One security for our clients. But after reading your blog, I think I should try other plugins too.


  6. Rafa Querido
    Aug 28, 2017 @ 19:25

    Hi guys!

    I wish I could read this article 6 months ago. I had a WordPress Blog and it got hacked. The hacker put some virus that never get deleted.

    We scanned more than 10x times and antivirus never find it. Result: WordPress deleted and I started a new blog.

    Now, I got the experience of every time I start a new project, I’ll add some security plugins!

    Thanks for sharing this tips!


    • Rubens
      Oct 11, 2017 @ 13:15

      Hey Rafa,

      I already got this virus too. I found a good solution here: there are some plugins you can change the path for your wp-admin.

      If someone try to access your it will be automatically redirected to home page!

      Isn’t an antivirus but you’ll be protected :)

      I hope it helps you!



  7. Peggy
    Oct 04, 2017 @ 00:53

    I am very familiar with Wordfence Security. This is the best WordPress security plugin. I like the firewall protection as well as malware scans. I was immediately notified when there were problems with my site. This plugin lists the hack attempts on a website in real time. This is one plugin that you definitely want to install. thank you for an informative post.


  8. tony newton
    Dec 25, 2017 @ 23:12

    Anyone here know of which of the plugins above could work in addition to “Wordfence” without conflicting to add additional security levels? Thanks so much


  9. gabriel
    Jan 07, 2018 @ 05:37

    I use and recommend wordfense, very gooood


  10. Sidney Restelo
    Mar 08, 2018 @ 15:32

    Vault Press is amazing and easy. I recommend.


  11. Valdo
    Mar 16, 2018 @ 02:07

    Thanks a lot, I already use some plugins, great for security of our website or blog


  12. Eric
    May 16, 2018 @ 15:16

    I use the All In One WP Security & Firewall plugin on my website.


  13. Mark Henry
    Aug 14, 2018 @ 04:48

    Thanks for sharing this great list of Security WordPress plugins. Very wonderful post. I also have found one free security plugin which is known as User Blocker. If you want to block or unblock any user, then this plugin is a great option. With the help of this plugin you can blocked any user by role or username for specific day & time OR date range Or permanently.


  14. Renan
    Nov 13, 2018 @ 12:14

    Sucuri Security is my number 1 choice in every site that I build! 100% :)


  15. Tiago Oliveira
    Mar 14, 2019 @ 15:35

    Protection is never too much, besides in a wordpress websites, that we spend a lot of time to create content!