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6 Best WordPress Security Plugins to Protect Your Site (Compared)

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Readers ask us a lot about which is the best WordPress security plugin for your website.

A WordPress security plugin protects your website from malware, brute-force attacks, and hacking attempts. Security plugins are designed to prevent attacks and provide complete security reports for your WordPress site.

In this article, we will share some of the best WordPress security plugins you can use to protect your website.

Best WordPress security plugins

Why Use a WordPress Security Plugin?

Millions of websites are infected with malware at any given time each week. An average website is attacked 94 times daily, including both non-WordPress and WordPress websites.

A security breach on your website can cause some serious damage to your business. Here are some examples:

  • Hackers can steal your data or the data belonging to your users and customers.
  • A compromised website can be used to distribute malicious code to unsuspecting users and other websites.
  • You can permanently lose data, lose access to your website, or your data could be held hostage.
  • Your website can be destroyed or defaced, affecting your SEO rankings and brand reputation.

You can scan your WordPress site for security breaches at any time. However, cleaning a hacked WordPress site without professional help can be difficult for non-technical users.

To avoid being hacked, you must follow security best practices to protect your website. We have compiled them in an easy-to-follow step-by-step WordPress security guide for beginners.

One of the most important steps in securing your WordPress site is to use a WordPress security plugin. These are plugins that help you harden WordPress security while blocking brute force attacks on your website.

Let’s take a look at some of the best WordPress security plugins and how they help you protect your website or blog.

Note: You only need to use one plugin from this list. Having multiple WordPress security plugins active can lead to bugs and errors.

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1. Sucuri

Sucuri

Sucuri is the industry leader in WordPress security, and they have one of the best WordPress security plugins on the market. They offer a basic free Sucuri Security plugin that helps you harden WordPress security and scan your website for common threats.

But the real value is in the paid plans, which come with the best WordPress firewall protection. A firewall helps you block brute force and malicious attacks from accessing WordPress.

Sucuri website firewall filters out bad traffic even before it reaches your server. They also serve static content from their own CDN servers.

Apart from security, their DNS-level firewall with CDN gives you a tremendous performance boost and speeds up your website.

Most importantly, they offer to clean up your WordPress site if it gets affected by malware at no additional cost. You can even take a website already affected by malware, and they will clean it up for you.

Who Is Sucuri Best For?

Sucuri is a great all-around WordPress security plugin, and all kinds of sites can benefit from using it. Whether you run a blog, online shop, portfolio website, or something else, Sucuri is a great option to cover all of your bases.

For more details, you can see our complete Sucuri review.

We used Sucuri here at WPBeginner for years, too. We only switched from Sucuri to Cloudflare because we needed a larger CDN network with features that focused more on enterprise clients.

2. MalCare

MalCare WordPress security plugin

MalCare is a complete security plugin that has recently gained popularity in the WordPress community. It comes with an in-depth malware scanner, one-click malware removal, and an endpoint firewall.

The powerful scanner runs automatically every day and scans every part of your WordPress site, including files and database. You can also scan your website on-demand if needed.

Plus, unlike other security plugins, MalCare doesn’t use the site resources to scan for malware. The scanning takes place on MalCare servers, which helps keep your website fast and responsive.

MalCare offers a free plan that includes a daily malware scan, vulnerability monitoring, and more. However, the free scan will only tell you if your site has malware. If malware is detected, you’ll need to upgrade your plan to use the automated cleaner.

Who Is MalCare Best For?

MalCare is great for sites with limited server resources. If your WordPress hosting plan limits your resource allocation, MalCare running on its own servers can help your site perform better while still providing protection. The free version is good for sites with a low likelihood of being hacked, but if that does happen, you can upgrade to access the one-click removal feature.

3. Wordfence

Wordfence

Wordfence is another popular WordPress security plugin. They offer a free version of their plugin, which comes complete with a powerful malware scanner, exploit detection, and threat assessment features.

The plugin will automatically scan your website for common threats, but you can also launch a full scan anytime. You will be alerted if any signs of a security breach are detected, and you will be given instructions to fix them.

Wordfence also comes with a built-in WordPress firewall. However, this firewall runs on your server just before loading WordPress. This makes it less effective than a DNS-level firewall like Sucuri.

Additionally, premium users have access to the most up-to-date firewall immediately, while free users still get them after a short delay.

For complete instructions, see our guide on how to install and set up Wordfence Security in WordPress.

Who Is WordFence Best For?

WordFence is a solid choice for most websites, and is especially great for site owners who want to make sure they stay up-to-date with what is going on with their site. WordFence provides threat assessments and reports regularly and notifies users immediately when a breach is detected.

4. SolidWP

SolidWP

SolidWP (formerly iThemes Security) is a WordPress security plugin built with other powerful features like backup and site management. Like all their products, SolidWP offers a nice, clean user interface with many options.

It comes with file integrity checks, security hardening, automatic blacklisting of bad users, two-factor authentication, strong password enforcement, brute force protection, and more.

SolidWP does not include a built-in website firewall and malware scanner. It uses a third-party service for both the firewall and scanning your site vulnerabilities.

Who Is SolidWP Best For?

SolidWP is an excellent choice for sites that want an all-in-one experience. Security isn’t all malware and firewalls, but backups and data protection, also. If you prefer to keep everything under one umbrella and as simple as possible, SolidWP is definitely a solid choice.

5. All-In-One WP Security

All in One WordPress Security

All-in-One WordPress Security, or AIOS, is a powerful WordPress security auditing, monitoring, and firewall plugin. It enables you to easily apply basic WordPress security best practices on your website.

It comes with features like login lockdown to prevent brute force attacks, IP filtering, file integrity monitoring, user account monitoring, scanning for suspicious patterns of database injection, and more.

It also comes with a basic website-level firewall that can detect common patterns and block them for you. However, it is not very efficient, and often you will be required to manually blacklist suspicious IPs.

Who Is AIOS Best For?

AIOS is a good option for content-heavy sites who need to protect their work. By preventing iFrame embedding, disabling comment spam, as well as letting you control RSS and Atom feeds, AIOS can keep your site safe from scrapers. It can also easily disable right-clicks on your site, disallowing bots and users from copy/pasting and stealing your writing and images.

To learn more, see our complete AIOS review.

6. Anti-Malware Security

Anti-Malware Security

Anti-Malware Security is an excellent and useful WordPress anti-malware and security plugin. The plugin comes with actively maintained definitions that help it find the most common threats.

Its malware scanner allows you to easily scan all files and folders on your WordPress site for malicious code, backdoors, malware, and other known patterns of malicious attacks.

The plugin requires you to create a free account on the plugin’s website to access the latest definitions and get some premium features like brute force prevention. The plugin also calls developers’ websites to look for updated definitions.

While the plugin runs thorough tests, it often shows many false positives. Matching each one with the source file is quite a lot of work.

Who Is Anti-Malware Security Best For?

Anti-Malware Security is one of the best WordPress security plugins for users who want more than simple brute force and DDoS attacks. By keeping up-to-date definitions and searching for backdoors and malicious patterns, Anti-Malware Security can help you find more sneaky hacks than simpler firewalls can.

Bonus: WPScan Security

WPScan

WPScan is a unique WordPress security plugin because it uses its own manually curated WordPress vulnerability database that is updated daily by dedicated WordPress security specialists and community members.

They scan your site for over 21,000 security vulnerabilities in WordPress plugins, themes, and core software.

The downside is that WPScan only provides support for enterprise customers. While free users can still use the plugin and maintain their websites securely with it, it’s really best for enterprise-level clients who need the support from the team.

We hope this article helped you find the best WordPress security plugin to protect your site. Below are some links that will help keep your website more secure and optimized.

Best Guides to Protect Your WordPress Site

We hope this article has helped you find the best WordPress security plugin for you. You can also check out our ultimate guide to WordPress security and our list of the best managed WordPress hosting companies that can keep your website safe.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

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Editorial Staff

Editorial Staff at WPBeginner is a team of WordPress experts led by Syed Balkhi with over 16 years of experience in WordPress, Web Hosting, eCommerce, SEO, and Marketing. Started in 2009, WPBeginner is now the largest free WordPress resource site in the industry and is often referred to as the Wikipedia for WordPress.

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Reader Interactions

26 CommentsLeave a Reply

  1. Syed Balkhi says

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    Did you know you can win exciting prizes by commenting on WPBeginner?
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  2. Dennis Muthomi says

    For me I use Wordfence to secure my WordPress site.
    I’ve used it for over a year because I really like the threat detection alerts and firewall features it provides to protect my site from attacks.
    Just wanted to share the security plugin I use.

  3. Dayo Olobayo says

    I appreciate the in-depth comparison of these different security plugins. It’s clear that there’s no one-size-fits-all solution and the best plugin for you will depend on your individual needs. One thing I would like to add is the importance of having a strong password and keeping your WordPress core and plugins up to date. Even the best security plugin can’t protect your site from everything if you don’t take these basic precautions.

  4. RICHARD AGUILAR says

    Hey, I like the information here. Thanks a lot. I have a question. What is the security plugin or plugins that wpbeginner is using right now?

  5. Fahad says

    Yes, it’s a good overview article about WordPress security plugins. thanks WPbeginner your articles are awesome

    • WPBeginner Support says

      While it is possible, it is not something we would recommend for beginners and we would still recommend using a security plugin in one way or another to help keep your site secure.

      Admin

  6. Syed Saadullah Shah says

    I prefer using Sucuri security because of its lightweight and super fast reliability.

  7. Alishia says

    I want to mention one thing about WordFence, it monitors your plugins and informs you if any plugin has been removed from plugin repository.

  8. Vickylove says

    Any security plugin i used with user role editor plugin in my website, i discover other user can not login into their the back-end. when i deactivate the security plugin, the users were able to login. how can i solve this?

    • WPBeginner Support says

      It would depend on the specific error and plugin, if you reach out to the security plugin’s support for the one you’re using they should be able to help :)

      Admin

  9. Rishabh Raj says

    Hello Sir,
    My WordPress site is trying to log in again and again, while I have changed the login url of my site, even though the log-in attempts are increasing,

    When I scanned the site with the i Theme Security plugin, then there are some file shows happening, which were not previously scanned
    Sir please help me

  10. Bram Stoker says

    Thanks for sharing list of such awesome security plugin, in my view Wordfence Security plugin is the best, I learned about it through Wpblog and really it indeed made my website secure.

  11. John says

    Hi, thx for nice article.
    But you should add to your security plugins list a nice plugin which i used about 1 year. This is WP Cerber Security. You should try it :-)

  12. Erim says

    I use Wordfence personally and it’s great. But for anyone who uses a different plugin, I would still recommend signing up for their newsletter. They do some pretty interesting research and test cases on various security issues and it’s pretty interesting/enlightening.

  13. Max says

    Hi,
    I read a lot of articles from you.
    This one is also great and helpful.

    But first you updated only your article from an earlier version right?

    Second why you do not write about how WordPress can be secured on a deeper level?
    For example secure php, install fail2ban, install htaccess files, and so on.

    The question is if you host WordPress on your own server wich possibilities and security mechanism you have to secure WordPress without plugins?

    Kind regards

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