WooCommerce is one of the most popular eCommerce software platforms. It has one of the highest market shares (23.43%), second to Squarespace online stores at 23.51%. Its popularity is mainly facilitated by its ease of use and user-friendliness advantages.
This is not to say that WooCommerce has no challenges. Security threats targeting eCommerce stores are on the rise. To use a WooCommerce store, users will have to login in and share their sensitive details with you.
Because WooCommerce stores have a significant market share, hackers target them more than other eCommerce platforms with a lower market share. The higher the market share, the more vulnerable an eCommerce platform will be.
This article explains seven practical tips to fix WooCommerce security issues.
1. Always Update Your Site
WordPress WooCommerce and security plugins usually become obsolete over time. As a result, they become vulnerable to security breaches. Developers and software vendors are always coming up with new or improved versions to address security issues. They will release new software updates that have improved security capabilities.
You have to install the security updates once they have been released. Failing to update is like choosing to live with the security vulnerabilities which could be detrimental to your WooCommerce security.
The best strategy to deal with the updates is to set aside a regular time to review and conduct the updates, backup your data, and deploy the updates to your WooCommerce website. You can as well set up the WordPress auto-update feature to do the task for you.
2. Use Security Plugins
Installing security plugins is one of the most vital WooCommerce security measures that you must implement. WooCommerce security plugins will scan through your site to identify any security threats.
The plugin will also clean up all your websites to protect them from brute force attacks, malware attacks, among many other security threats.
3. Install SSL Certificate
Having an SSL certificate on your WooCommerce store will ensure that all in-transit data and communications between your store servers and your customers’ browsers are encrypted. Encryption ensures that no intruder can read or decipher a communication.
You must acquire your Secure Socket Layer (SSL) from a trusted SSL certificate providers like RapidSSL, CheapSSLShop, GeoTrust, DigiCert etc. There are several SSL certificate options that you can work with. However, I will recommend the wildcard SSL certificate because of its ease of use and cost-effective advantages that the certificate brings forth.
With a wildcard SSL certificate, you only need a single certificate to secure an unlimited number of first-level subdomains under the chosen main domain. If budget is a concern, there are several premium yet cheap Wildcard SSL certificate that you can choose to work with.
When you invest in one such certificate, you afford premium and reliable security to multiple subdomains such as blogs, payment pages upto level one.
4. Protect Wp-Config.php File
Wp-Config.php File carries critical data and information. Therefore, it is one of the most vital files on your WooCommerce store and should be protected at all costs. It would be difficult for an attacker to hack into your WooCommerce store if your Wp-Config.php File is not accessible.
Protecting your Wp-Config.php File is not an arduous task. All you need to do is move the file to a higher level than the root of your WooCommerce store.
5. Use Strong Passwords and Enable Two-Factor Authentication
Passwords act like the keys that lock your WooCommerce platform to protect it from unauthorized intrusions. The stronger the passwords, the more secure your WooCommerce platform will be. The following are the best passwords practices that you can adopt for your WooCommerce platform:
- Use unique passwords for each account and advise your clients to follow suit.
- Create strong passwords that combine numbers, letters, and special characters. The more complex the password, the more secure it will be.
- Password Length should be a key priority. Use passwords with eight or more characters.
- Use password manager tools.
- Store the passwords safely.
Passwords are susceptible to attacks such as brute force attacks and dictionary attacks. As such, you will need an extra layer of authentication to fortify your authentication process.
Two-factor authentication, commonly abbreviated as 2FA, is one of the most fantastic WooCommerce security measures that will safeguard your store against intruders.
2FA denies unauthorized people the ability to validate the logins via the extra authentication factors. For instance, a user will have to enter a one-time password and use biometric authentication features such as voice recognition, retina scans, or fingerprint IDs to gain access to an account.
Only the rightful account owners have access to the second authentication factor. For your WooCommerce security, ensure you enable the 2-factor authentication.
6. Back-Up WooCommerce Store
If you ever lose your data or your WooCommerce website gets hacked, then a backup is the easiest way to get your website on track as soon as possible.
A backup plan will help you retrieve all your data. Without a backup, your business will most likely cease to exist, which is not a good thing. Here are some of the WooCommerce backup tips that you should know:
- Select a WooCommerce backup plugin that will automatically backup all your data. One of the best plugins that you can work with is the JetPack Backup.
- Regularly update your data. You can select the daily backup option or real-time backup option.
- Ensure you have a seamless data restoration plan to have your website up and running in just one click.
7. Use a Secure Hosting Provider
Selecting a web host is one of the most significant business decisions that will impact the success of your business. A reliable web host will play a vital role in the security of any business.
With the right hosting provider, you can adequately secure your WooCommerce store. Choose the wrong host, and you will end up causing all kinds of web security headaches.
The first question you ought to ask yourself when choosing a web hosting provider is, “will the web hosting provider take your WooCommerce security seriously?” If you have any reason to believe that the host will easily compromise the security of your WooCommerce site, then you better not use such a provider.
Here are some of the critical considerations to make when choosing a web hosting provider for your WooCommerce store.
- Always choose a dedicated hosting provider over a shared host.
- The hosting provider should maintain regular backups.
- The web hosting provider should monitor your internal networks to detect and prevent intrusions and anomalous activities.
- The web host should offer firewalls capable of protecting your networks against all forms of intrusions.
- The web host should offer antimalware and antivirus software to protect your networks against any form of malware attacks.
If your web hosting provider does not meet any of these thresholds, it would be best to work with a more secure host to avoid any security issues to your WooCommerce website.
All the hustle and bustle involved in launching a WooCommerce store can make you quickly forget about the security concerns. However, an insecure WooCommerce store could potentially expose your customer data to malicious people. Therefore, it would be best to have a cybersecurity measure that protects your store from security threats.
By following the seven steps, you will be able to formulate the perfect groundwork for a secure and trustworthy WooCommerce store that is well protected in any event of an attack.