Do you want to skip the read and get right to my top pick? The best WordPress malware removal/ WordPress malware scanner for most people is Sucuri.
Malware is the bane of every computer user, but it is an even bigger headache for those maintaining websites and online stores. Those who put out malware aren’t just doing it for the fun of disrupting your online operations, but they’re in it for something more sinister: sites hijacked for ransom, a hack that causes a significant loss of data, outright theft from e-commerce hubs, and vital personal information stolen and sold.
For those using WordPress, the most popular – and easiest to use – site building platform available, there are a number of options to scan WordPress site for malware and getting rid of it in the event that it does manage to worm its way into your site. But given how many security plugins are currently available for the platform, how do you know which one to choose and install?
We’ve taken out the guesswork for you in our roundup of the top WordPress malware removal plug-ins.
What is the Best WordPress Malware Scanner/Removal Software?
A truly great WordPress malware scanner/WordPress malware removal application should be able to do all of the following tasks:
- Ability to scan WordPress site for malware and clean WordPress malware, specifically the detection and deletion of malicious scripts following a thorough scan;
- Malware removal without compromising the structural integrity, performance, and aesthetic of the website. The automated nature of these plugins can distinguish good code from bad, thus preventing any unnecessary and inconvenient deletions in the affected site;
- Immediately clean WordPress malware by purging the affected website, thus preventing the spread of malicious code into all the files and folders stored within. This keeps the site operational and prevents hackers from using it and any emails connected to it for their dirty work; and
- Frequent site cleansing sans additional fees, thus providing solid protection against repeat infections.
Our Top Six Picks for the Best WordPress Malware Scanner/Removal Plugins for WordPress:
We've tested and vetted over 20 platforms for this article, and as a result, came up with this shortlist of the top WordPress malware removal plug-ins:
- Sucuri – best overall for WordPress malware scanner/ WordPress malware removal
- iThemes Security – best in features, 10-point security check
- Titan Anti-spam and Security
- Cerber Security, Anti-spam, and Malware Scan
What Makes the Top Malware Removal Plugins for WordPress?
In order to pass muster in our rankings for the best WordPress malware scanner/clean WordPress malware software for WordPress, our top picks have passed through a rigorous selection process based on the following criteria:
- Ease of installation – how easy is it to install the WordPress malware scanner/removal plugin?
- Ease of use – after installation, is there a learning curve involved to scan WordPress site for malware and clean WordPress malware from your site?
- Effectiveness against malware and brute force attacks – how effective is the WordPress malware scanner in detecting and removing malware?
- Overall functionality – how is its overall functionality?
Our Top Picks in Detail:
As the leading WordPress security plugin, Sucuri is considered one of the most powerful applications to scan WordPress site for malware and clean WordPress malware.
At its most basic, it serves as a firewall that filters out potential threats even before they hit your site. It can scan WordPress website for malware, and effectively and efficiently removes all traces of a malware infection and subsequently makes the necessary (and immediate) repairs to any damage inflicted on your website.
Aside from its ability to block, clean, and repair, it can also improve your website’s loading speed, resilience, and overall performance.
- Professional malware and hack removals;
- Website application firewall;
- Blacklist monitoring and removal;
- SSL support and monitoring; and
- Advanced denial of service mitigation.
- Offers a free-to-use clean WordPress malware removal plug-in for those on a tight budget;
- Reasonable prices for paid plans;
- Immediate customer/technical support
- Limited functionality in free edition;
- May be too expensive for SMEs
Pricing: Free plan; Paid plans range between $199.99 and $499.99 annually
Developed by longtime internet security experts, iThemes Security essentially prevents malware infection and infestation via a proactive scan WordPress site for malware and other vulnerabilities. In doing so, it automatically applies all the necessary updates to your site and site-ware.
Even after a scan, it is built and deployed in such a way so that it is constantly monitoring for suspicious activities occurring in the back end of your site. The scan even goes up to the point that it minimises the entry of spam into emails connected to or involved with the site.
This particular plugin boasts of more than 25 essential features that ensure one’s website is well-protected against malware incursions as well as denial of service attacks.
While it is quite a potent malware solution, we have to advise potential users that there are some vulnerabilities it may not capture when you scan WordPress site for malware. Therefore, it’s best to do a repeat scan or, better yet, immediately install fresh updates for the plugin as soon as they become available.
- Standard 10-point security check;
- 404 protection;
- Database backup;
- File change detection; and
- Notification centre.
- Works with both network and multi-site installations;
- User interface is one of the easiest to use;
- Offers numerous settings to enhance site security
- This WordPress malware scanner plugin requires manual editing for some of its features;
- Can considerably slow downloading time while running;
- Unless updated, a sweep scan can actually fail to detect a number of vulnerabilities
Pricing: Free plan; Paid plans range from $58 to $130 annually
Wordfence is a plugin that brings together two aspects of online security: a malware scanner / cleaner and an endpoint firewall specifically created for WordPress.
This plugin automatically scans for the most common threats (a list that is constantly being updated in the background) and has the additional feature of voluntary scanning whenever users deem a scan necessary.
It may not fix errors and issues instantaneously, but it will send a quick notification to site managers whenever it detects a malware attack or security breach. Interestingly enough, it will also give technicians instructions on how best to deal with the detected issue, making it a great time-saver.
- Real-time threat intelligence so that you get constant updates for firewall rules and malware signatures;
- Reputation checks;
- Country blocking;
- Real-time IP blacklisting;
- Premium technical support
- Constantly being updated against the latest threats;
- Offers a complete firewall for both free and premium users;
- Real-time email updating in the event of threats
- Paid subscribers are given priority when it comes to technical supports;
- Built-in firewall is not as effective as the DNS firewalls of other plugins;
- Can be difficult to learn at first
Pricing: Free plan; Paid plans range between $74.25 and $99.00 one-time payment
Instant results are what you can expect with MalCare if you scan WordPress site for malware and clean WordPress malware from your site. This is because virtually all of its malware-detecting, fighting, and cleaning features can be accessed and deployed with a single click. This plugin does a most thorough scan of your website, accurately locating malware, and automatically blowing it out of the water, so to speak.
Likewise, in case the infection has run too deep into your site, MalCare's highly skilled technical assistance team will step right in for manual cleanup – a surprising perk that comes with every subscription.
- Proprietary server for scanning websites;
- Automatic malware removal;
- Intuitive malware protection;
- Automatic PHP blocking; and
- Full website management through a centralised dashboard
- Has provisions for automatic cleanup;
- Integrated firewall;
- Highly competent technical team for manual cleanups
- Severe issues require manual intervention from the technical team;
- Free edition only offers the scanner and firewall;
- Reparative features only available for premium plans
Pricing: Free plan; Paid plans range between $99 and $299 annually
Titan Anti-Spam and Security
Referred to as a comprehensive WordPress security solution, the Titan plugin includes a firewall, malware protection, and spam filter in one comprehensive software package. Its built-in security functions are constantly updating the plugin with updated firewall rules, malware signatures, as well as a whole directory of potentially dangerous IP addresses.
It also has the distinction of being one of the easiest security plugins to clean WordPress malware with, thanks to its user-friendly and highly intuitive interface.
- Anti-spam measures;
- Web application firewall against malicious or suspect traffic;
- WordPress security scanner;
- Site checker; and
- Multiple language support
- Algorithms were specifically designed to pinpoint malware and spambots;
- Protects against brute force attacks;
- Easy to learn and use interface
- Bulk of features only available in premium edition;
- May not be applicable especially to those who want to tweak it to suit certain requirements;
- Not advisable for developers looking into developing their own anti-malware solutions
Pricing: Free plan; Paid plans range between $55 and $319 annually
Cerber Security, Anti-spam, and Malware Scan
Designed for freelancers and small-scale businesses in mind, Cerber Security offers protection for forms created with WordPress' signature ecommerce plugin WooCommerce. In addition, it has provisions for secure registration and checkout, restrict form submissions from specific locations, and delete spam comments.
Specifically, this WordPress malware removal/scanning plugin helps prevent the insertion of malicious codes, and block potential threats through their IP addresses. It also allows users to schedule site-wide malware scanning on an hourly, daily, or weekly basis.
- Scan WordPress site for malware and other vulnerabilities;
- Whitelisting and blacklisting;
- Behavioral analytics;
- AI/Machine learning; and
- Scheduled malware scanning and updating
- Limits login attempts from suspicious IP addresses;
- Monitors all activities related to logging in or out;
- Disables automatic directing to the login page
- Goes into citadel mode post-installation;
- Existing issues with 404 errors;
- May not be ideal for large or enterprise-level businesses
Pricing: Free plan; Standard premium plan costs $99.00 annually
Conclusion and Recommendations:
Today, WordPress boasts of being the site builder and management platform responsible for over 70 million websites currently online, so it isn’t surprising that the platform is constantly being eyed by hackers and online malcontents. Consequently, the options we have presented in this feature will help site owners and managers protect their websites from threats of all kinds.
While we have presented our recommendations, we still advise our readers to consider a plugin that works within your budget yet can protect your site in the most efficient and effective manner.
I run an ecommerce website. Can a WordPress malware removal plugin be of benefit for me?
Yes, it can. Specifically, WordPress malware removal plug-ins can prevent the insertion of malicious scripts that may program your site into siphoning your online earnings to external accounts or cause a denial of service that can seriously hamper your operations.
Is email spam removal a standard feature of WordPress malware removal plug-ins?
Not all WordPress malware removal/scanning plugin apps have this function built in, so it’s best to go over the developer’s site to check specific features.
That's all for now:
If you've read all the way through this top WordPress malware removal plug-ins list, we are thankful. We hope you can now answer the question of what is the best clean WordPress malware plugin option for you! We have a large collection of articles, guides, and comparison reviews of eCommerce solutions, web hosting providers, website builders, and more! Feel free to check them out;
Not only the best tea/coffee maker on the team Sophie is our Chief Editor. Skilled across multiple marketing skill areas Sophie is our all rounder and a great asset to the team. Sophie is a website building trainer and tech writer who takes pride in helping small businesses and startups build their websites and launch their eCommerce platforms. Sophie is also the practical joker of the team and always wears a smile on her face. In her spare time she likes to spend her time with family. She loves going on holidays and spending time with friends.