The Hacking of WordPress Websites
Today, even customers who rely upon WordPress support services still need to remain alert for hacking. WordPress offers many advantages for website construction. It remains one of the safest platforms. Yet unfortunately, unscrupulous people sometimes launch hacking attacks against vulnerable websites constructed with the help of the open source WordPress platform.
This problem may cause frustrating delays, embarrassment, data losses, data corruption, identity theft, and/or financial losses. Hacking poses a significant online threat today. Security experts recommend remaining alert for several types of attacks on WordPress websites, including the following:
1. Password Theft Attacks
Stealing site passwords poses a frequent avenue of attack. Some hackers steal customer information and then try to use individual data (like names or birthdays) in passwords to break into websites. Other WordPress Password hacks employ a “dictionary attack”: hackers enter short names or numbers seeking to login with an obvious password. A “brute force” attack seeks to use software programs to guess someone’s password.
2. Social Engineering Attacks
Numerous hacking attacks seek to penetrate websites by obtaining unauthorized information from company employees or customers. Hackers may lure customers to visit imitation websites or respond to bogus emails from a company in a technique called “phishing”. A “quid pro quo” attack occurs when hackers solicit information by posing as company service representatives or other authorized agents.
3. Plugin Vulnerability Attacks
Keep software plugins updated on your computer or mobile device to help discourage hacking attacks that use snippets of code found in plugins to hack into websites. Don’t allow your WordPress site to accept abandoned plugins.
4. Key Logger Attacks
Some hackers use software to detect keystrokes as they are entered on a PC or a mobile device. Emails asking a customer to enter specific information might allow a key logger program to begin conducting surveillance of the customer’s passwords, for example. Hackers may misuse information harvested in this illicit manner to break into websites constructed using WordPress.
5. Unsafe Theme Attacks
Hackers sometimes install malware onto free programs (including free website or PC or mobile device background themes). In general, check themes using antivirus programs before installing them. Unfortunately, not all antivirus programs detect all types of malware.
6. Hosting Vulnerability Attacks
Both shared hosting services (and shared customer ISP networks) potentially increase hacking risks. Hackers sometimes break into sites hosting WordPress websites using SQL, a database language, for example. When an ISP serves multiple customers, individual hackers may break into the network and access material on other customer computers.
7. Distributed Denial-of-Service Attacks
Some hackers disrupt websites with attacks by overwhelming numbers of visitors, often using bots. In other cases, hackers create networks of hijacked computers and use them to attack commercial sites.
How can legitimate businesses (and their customers) combat hacking? Two popular approaches include maintaining the tightest possible website security and hiring ethical hackers to test your site’s vulnerabilities. Additionally, treat hacking as a crime (not a youthful prank). Organized criminal groups perpetrate this type of destructive intrusion for financial gain. They steal intellectual property, and sometimes commit identity theft against business customers.
In the United States, discover the appropriate reporting location by using detailed guidelines provided to the public by the Department of Justice. The FBI refers some types of hacking complaints to an Internet Crime Complaint Center. You may also contact you state’s Attorney General’s Office.