Tingalls Blog - Marketing Tips & Tricks

How to Perform a WordPress Software and Plugin Review for Security (And How Often)

When it comes to keeping your WordPress website secure, regular maintenance is key. One of the most important things you can do as a website owner is to perform software and plugin reviews. Tingalls has put together a simple guide on how and how often you should do it.

Why is a regular review important?

WordPress is a robust platform, but it’s also a popular target for hackers because of its popularity. Outdated software and plugins can create vulnerabilities, making your site an easy target for attackers. Regular reviews help ensure everything is up-to-date and secure.

Here are a few tips that we follow with our website maintenance program:

1. Create a Backup 
Before making any changes, always back up your website. This ensures you can restore it if something goes wrong during the update process.

wordpress updates using red alerts

2. Update WordPress Software Itself
When you log in, you’ll notice a little red alert circle at the top of your dashboard (see screenshot). This means a new version of WordPress is available for you to download and install. WordPress frequently releases updates that include security patches and new features.

3. Review Installed Plugins
Like the WordPress software, plugins need updates as well. Navigate to the Plugins section of the dashboard. Scan your plugin list for any updates and if you can, click “update.” Pay special attention to plugins that haven’t been updated in a long time—these may no longer be supported and could pose a security risk. This is also a good time to review/replace any plugins that are no longer being updated.

4. Remove Unused Plugins
If you have plugins installed that you’re not using, deactivate and delete them. Even inactive plugins can create vulnerabilities.

5. Scan for Vulnerabilities
Purchase and install a security plugin like Wordfence to scan your site for vulnerabilities. These tools can identify potential issues and recommend fixes.

How Often Should You Perform a Review?

At Tingalls, we recommend a comprehensive review of your WordPress core, plugins, and themes at least once a month. Set an alert on your calendar to remind you.

Also, you should review your website any time you make significant changes, such as adding new plugins or switching themes.

Budgeting for Future “Fixes”

Another tip is to set aside funds for potential larger repairs down the road. Even $50-100 for website maintenance can help cover costs associated with unexpected issues. This proactive approach can save you from larger, more expensive problems in the future and ensure your site remains secure and functional.


Following this simple checklist can help keep your WordPress site secure and running smoothly. Regular reviews might seem like a hassle, but they protect your website design from potential threats. If you need help, reach out to us, we’re happy to provide assistance.