Securing Your WordPress Site: Key Steps to Protect Your Website

Enhance your WordPress site's security by changing the wp-admin URL, deleting the default user, disabling XML-RPC if unnecessary, and securing the WP-JSON/WP/V2/USERS endpoint. These steps help protect against unauthorized access and potential attacks.

WordPress is one of the most popular content management systems in the world, powering millions of websites. However, its popularity makes it a prime target for hackers. Ensuring the security of your WordPress site is crucial to protect your data and your visitors. In this post, we’ll cover essential steps you can take to secure your WordPress site, including changing the wp-admin URL, deleting the default user, understanding XML-RPC, and securing the WP-JSON/WP/V2/USERS endpoint.

1. Change the wp-admin URL

The default login URL for WordPress is yourwebsite.com/wp-admin. Hackers know this and often use automated scripts to target this URL with brute force attacks. Changing the wp-admin URL can add an additional layer of security by making it harder for attackers to find your login page.

How to Change the wp-admin URL:

  • Use a Plugin: Plugins like WPS Hide Login, iThemes Security, or All In One WP Security & Firewall allow you to easily change the login URL.
  • Manually Edit Files: You can also manually change the login URL by editing your .htaccess file and wp-login.php file. However, this method is more complex and can be risky if not done correctly.

By changing the default login URL, you can significantly reduce the chances of a successful brute force attack.

2. Delete the Default User

During the WordPress installation process, a default user with the username “admin” is created. This username is a common target for hackers attempting to gain unauthorized access to your site. Deleting this default user and creating a new user with administrative privileges can enhance your site’s security.

Steps to Delete the Default User:

  • Create a New Admin User: Go to the Users section in your WordPress dashboard and add a new user with administrative privileges. Choose a unique username and a strong password.
  • Delete the Default User: After creating the new admin user, log out and log back in with the new credentials. Then, go back to the Users section and delete the default “admin” user. Make sure to attribute all posts and content from the old user to the new user.

3. What is XML-RPC?

XML-RPC is a remote procedure call (RPC) protocol that uses XML to encode its calls and HTTP as a transport mechanism. WordPress uses XML-RPC to enable remote connections and perform functions like posting content, editing, and other administrative tasks from external applications.

Security Concerns:

  • Brute Force Attacks: XML-RPC can be exploited for brute force attacks since it allows multiple authentication attempts with a single request.
  • DDoS Attacks: XML-RPC can also be used to amplify Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks.

How to Secure XML-RPC:

  • Disable XML-RPC: If you don’t need XML-RPC functionality, you can disable it by adding the following code to your theme’s functions.php file:
    add_filter('xmlrpc_enabled', '__return_false');
  • Use a Plugin: Security plugins like Disable XML-RPC or iThemes Security can help you disable or limit XML-RPC functionality.

4. Secure WP-JSON/WP/V2/USERS Endpoint

The WP-JSON/WP/V2/USERS endpoint is part of the WordPress REST API and provides access to user data. While it’s a powerful feature for developers, it can also expose sensitive information if not properly secured.

Security Measures:

  • Restrict Access: Limit access to the endpoint by requiring authentication. You can use plugins like REST API Authentication or WP REST API Controller to control access.
  • Disable User Endpoint: If you don’t need the user endpoint, you can disable it by adding the following code to your theme’s functions.php file:
add_filter('rest_endpoints', function ($endpoints) {
    if (isset($endpoints['/wp/v2/users'])) {
    return $endpoints;


By taking these steps, you can significantly improve the security of your WordPress site. Regularly updating your site, using strong passwords, and employing security plugins are additional measures that can further protect your website from threats. Stay vigilant and proactive to keep your WordPress site secure.

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