What is WordPress Firewall & Why You Need it?


WordPress firewall: Learning that your website has been compromised is one of the worst feelings a company owner can have. Hacking has become more complicated over time, making it more difficult to detect and defend against. As a result, you can never have too many security measures in place for your website.

One of the oldest methods of hardening the website against vulnerabilities is to use a firewall. Did you know that firewalls started as physical security measures? They were designed to stop a fire from spreading. Isn’t that practical? That’s a firewall, but what does a WordPress firewall entail?

What is WordPress Firewall?

Incoming traffic to WordPress websites is filtered by a firewall. The platform is open to good traffic, but bots and poor traffic are blocked. The WordPress firewall can be configured to block attacks on specific WordPress entry points and vulnerabilities. For example, you can set up the firewall to protect the WordPress login page from brute force attacks (recommended read – brute force attacks), preventing someone from accessing it for more than 5 minutes. As a result, a personalized WordPress firewall protects your site according to your requirements. It is very good at protecting against hacking attempts.

Do You Need a WordPress Firewall?

There is no single method for achieving full security when it comes to WordPress security. To secure a website, one must do a variety of things. However, the protection of a website is based on a variety of variables, so it is not absolute. Since full security is virtually impossible to obtain, it’s all about hardening a site’s security. A firewall assists in the introduction of necessary security measures for a website. It helps thwart any potential malicious hack attacks before they happen and ruin your WordPress website by preventing bad traffic from accessing your site.

What Are the Different Kinds of WordPress Firewall?

There are three types of firewalls: plugin-based, cloud-based, and in-built firewalls, depending on what they cover and where they’re mounted. Let’s take a look at the variations between these firewalls.

Plugin-based firewall and just like every other plugin on your platform, it’ll be installed and configured. They sit next to your site to secure it, as you would expect. The firewall is used to filter all requests made on the web. When anyone requests access to your website, this is referred to as a subpoena. The firewall has a few pre-set rules for determining if a request is malicious. The plugin-based firewalls Wordfence and NinjaFirewall are good examples. MalCare also has a WordPress firewall plugin for ongoing website protection.

When a visitor makes a request to your site, the request is automatically sent to the cloud firewall, which is activated and configured like every other plugin on your device. The firewall then decides whether or not the request is legitimate. The request will be blocked if it is malicious. However, if it is legitimate, the request is permitted to continue. Sucuri and Cloudflare are two excellent examples of cloud-based firewalls.

Finally, we have the built-in firewall provided by web hosting companies. This firewall is used to safeguard all websites that use the hosting provider’s services.

How Does the WordPress Firewall Work?

WordPress Firewall is an application firewall that can prevent attacks on your web by using one or all of the following methods:

  • Filtering: Firewalls use filters to examine the data that arrives at your website.
  • Proxy: The firewall acts as a ‘middleman,’ allowing the website to communicate with the rest of the internet. It forwards good traffic while blocking poor traffic from accessing your website.
  • Inspection: Like a bouncer at a bar, firewalls use lists. The firewall lets data through if key elements of the data arriving at your site appear to be on the ‘good’ list (also known as a ‘whitelist‘). If the data appears to be on the ‘blacklist,’ it is withheld.

The type of application firewall you use, however, is determined by the types of threats your website can face and the location where they will be deployed.

Some of them function at the server software level (Apache level) and prevent data from being processed by WordPress by restricting access. This is accomplished by altering your .htaccess file. iThemes Security and All in One WP Security are two examples of WordPress firewall plugins that use this tool. The issue with this category is that if you don’t have the technological know-how to fix things when they go wrong, you’ll be stuck with an inaccessible website.

Other firewall plugins function at the web application level (WordPress level), filtering attacks when WordPress is loading before the malware has a chance to completely process. WordFence and Shield are two examples of WordPress firewalls of this kind.

Cloud-based solutions that function as a “reverse proxy” between your web server and internet traffic are also available. This means they break in and redirect all traffic to your website, relieving your web server and WordPress of some of the load.

One thing to keep in mind is that even though your web host has an application firewall built-in, it’s likely that these firewalls are designed to secure their infrastructure rather than your website.

Over to You

One of the many ways to secure your WordPress site is to use a firewall. However, there is no magic bullet that will absolutely secure your website. Rather, it’s a crucial first step in safeguarding the website. Check out our guide on how to whitelist an IP address if your firewall has inadvertently blocked good traffic. Check out our previous post for more information about how to protect your WordPress account. Please contact us if you have any questions. We respond to all of our readers’ questions as soon as possible.