iThemes Security Plugin

The Best WordPress Security Plugin to Secure & Protect WordPress

Previously known as “Better WP Security,” the iThemes Security plugin is another security add-on for WordPress that offers a cut-down free version, and a premium version with better features.

Why is a security plug-in so important?

Every 39 seconds, a website becomes the victim of a cyberattack. On any given day, an average of 30,000 websites come under attack, and IoT cyberattacks saw a 300% spike in 2019 alone. Devices, websites, and personal data can become vulnerable to bad actors if up-to-date security measures aren’t used. Our society is more and more online-focused, so businesses and individuals making their livelihood online need to be security-minded to keep their websites protected.

With more than 40 percent of websites being run through WordPress, iThemes Security Pro is a good option to defend your online content from hackers. 

What Sets iThemes Security Pro Apart

iThemes Security Pro offers substantial security protections to WordPress creators. iThemes Security Pro prevents brute force attacks by tracking login attempts, which WordPress won’t do on its own. This plug-in also blocks and minimizes spam, scans your site for vulnerabilities in your plugins, and retrieves necessary updates.

By detecting when your site is under attack, iThemes Security Pro can also help you take measures against hackers such as freezing user access or locking out the suspicious account. The plug-in also has features like requiring a strong password for new users, and a reCAPTCHA authentication to prevent bots from logging into your site.  If iSecurity Themes Pro detects any harmful activity, it will automatically apply known patches to the breach to secure your site. Whether you are at work, out and about, or even sleeping, iThemes Security Pro is working in the background so that you don’t have to continually monitor your website. 

Plan Limitations and Pricing

There is no free version of iThemes Security Pro, but there is a version called “iThemes Security” you can download here. The “Pro” version only has paid options, and is a separate plug-in available for download. iThemes Security Pro has three premium plans for users wanting to utilize this WordPress plugin:

Blogger

The Blogger plan allows users to secure a single website for $80 a year. This also includes a year’s worth of updates for your plugins as well as a year of ticketed support. So whether you are posting homemade recipes or do-it-yourself life hacks on your blog, this plan will cover your basic security needs. 

Small Business

If you are trying to get your business off the ground, you may want to upgrade to the Small Business plan. For $127 a year, users gain a year’s worth of ticketed support and plug-in updates for ten sites, so your plugin protection can expand alongside your small business.

Gold

You can get iThemes Security Pro without restrictions if you upgrade to their top-tier plan. With the iThemes Security Pro Gold level, users can pay $199 per year for access on an unlimited number of websites. As with the other two plans, you also get plugin updates and ticketed support for a year. 

If your needs change and you need to change or cancel your plan, iThemes Security Pro also comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Conclusion

Beneath the surface, websites run an increasingly diverse array of modules and libraries in order to keep the site functioning. There’s a lot going on behind the scenes that often escapes the eye of the casual user, or even the site admin. As a result, if a hacker can identify a flaw in a single one of these libraries, they could potentially get into your system. In practice, they would most likely scan thousands of sites at a time for a vast number of different, already known, vulnerabilities. With iThemes Security Pro, you can nip these attacks in the bud, with no action needed other than downloading the plugin. Cyber-attacks may seem inevitable (and they often are), but iThemes Security Pro and other security plug-ins reduce the risk of attacks so users can work on their site without fear of its security being compromised.

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Alternatives

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Wordfence

https://www.wordfence.com/

Just like iThemes Security, Wordfence is a software firewall that offers both a free and premium plan for users.

The free plan offers basic protection for those running smaller sites.

The main difference between the free and premium Wordfence plans is that the threat database (malware signatures, IP blacklist, firewall rules) is updated in real time, whereas the free plan this is delayed by 30 days.

The premium plan cost users $99 a year, and while there is no affiliate program currently available, it still has garnered fairly decent reviews.

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Sucuri Wordpress Security & Scanner

https://sucuri.net/wordpress-security-plugin/

Sucuri WordPress Security & Scanner is a free security plugin available to WordPress users. Through the use of its Security Web Application Firewall proxy, it stops cyberattacks so that they never end up reaching your website.

The Sucuri WordPress Security and Scanner plugin does not cost the user any money to download, but their Sucuri Web Application Firewall is a premium security program that comes at a cost. This option is ideal for users who have sites with large amounts of traffic and more at stake to lose in the event of a cyber attack.

The firewall built into iThemes differs from the Sucuri WAF in that the WAF is cloud based, meaning that it's hosted in the cloud by Sucuri. They intercept traffic and verify it's legitimate before sending to your site. The iThemes firewall is a software firewall, so running on your site as a part of the WordPress application.

The Web Application Firewall is quite pricey - the Basic plan is $199 a year, the Pro plan is $299 a year, and the Business platform is $499 a year.

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