Are you a blogger who uses WordPress to power your blog?
If so, you probably have several plugins installed that add extra features or functionality to your blog.
To be sure, WordPress plugins are wonderful things. They can add all kinds of useful and attractive bells and whistles to your blog and make it more enjoyable to use.
What’s more, installing a high-quality security plugin can help protect your blog from hackers. And believe me, your blog IS being attacked by hackers on a daily basis, whether you realize it or not.
Unfortunately, all of the above being said, some plugins can also put your blog and all of your hard work at risk.
If you’ve been blogging for a while you probably know that abandoned plugins that haven’t been updated for some time can serve as back doors for hackers to break into your blog
That’s why it’s important to either replace or simply remove any plugin that hasn’t been updated in a long while.
Luckily, the awesome Wordfence Security plugin makes it easy to stay informed about any outdated plugins that might be running on your blog.
You really should be using Wordfence anyway because it does an exceptional job at locking hackers out of your blog, but it will also alert you via email when it detects that one of your plugins hasn’t been updated in over two years.
In other words, Wordfence does the work for you so you can concentrate on writing great blog posts instead of having to keep an eagle eye on your plugins.
Another serious plugin vulnerability that has recently come to light is scammers purchasing legitimate popular plugins and then adding malicious code to them to do any number of bad things to – and with – your blog.
I recently had to stop using a couple of my favorite plugins on my own blogs for this very reason, and I’m still upset about it.
But things are what they are, and when a good plugin ends up on the wrong side of evil you really need to ditch it and either switch to a different plugin or simply do without whatever feature it was adding to your blog.
After all, the last thing you want is a blog that’s doing all kinds of misdeeds on the Internet while making it look like you’re the culprit!
The folks at Wordfence have published a very informative blog post about this very topic. In fact, that post was the inspiration for this one. I strongly recommend that you take a few moments to read it.
Now, back to the topic at hand…
Once you have it installed, the Wordfence plugin will alert you right away when one of your plugins has been removed from the WordPress Plugin Repository for any reason, including for going over to the dark side.
Bottom line: Plugins are great for enhancing your WordPress blog and making it easier to use and more secure. But outdated plugins and plugins that have been injected with malicious code can do a lot more harm than good. Be aware, and take action as necessary.
Bonus tip #1: This post gives 13 tips for building and maintaining a fast loading and secure WordPress blog.
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