There is no doubt that Wordfence is king of the security plugins for WordPress. There are some other strong contenders but for the sake of this post we will focus on Wordfence, specifically the free version. Like most premium plugins with a free version, I would guess the vast majority of Wordfence users are using only the free version. So in this article, we’ll compare the free version of tinyShield to the free version of Wordfence. Also, I would like to point out that Wordfence has a lot of talent on their side and I commend their team for what they do. This article is in no way meant to disparage either their product or business – my intention is to detail how Wordfence and tinyShield can work together.
Wordfence itself is comprised of multiple components. The plugin offers a firewall, a security scanner and then an assortment of other security tools. The scanner acts as sort of a malware scanner – think of it as an anti-virus for your WordPress site. This feature mainly helps recover/detect an already infected site. There are also login security tools as well – two factor authentication, CAPTCHA, etc.
Another component of Wordfence is the threat scanner. Their threat scanner analyzes each request that comes into a WordPress site and determines if it’s a legit and harmless request, or if it’s a malicious request and needs to be blocked. In Wordfence’s case, this is done by a signature feed that is pushed to each site. This signature feed works very much like anti-virus signatures. The Free version of the plugin allows users to access these signatures 30 days after they are published, whereas the paid version allows immediate access.
Wordfence also offers a real time blacklist, but it is a premium only feature.
While Wordfence has several different components, tinyShield only focuses on real time IP blacklists. Blacklisting is a premium only feature of Wordfence, but tinyShield offers real time IP blacklisting for any WordPress site for free.
A huge advantage of tinyShield is that our processing of IP blacklists is done in real time on our servers, which takes the processing off of your web server and puts it on our cluster. Since we focus purely on being a real time IP blacklist plugin, we don’t waste extra resources on other features, and instead offer a lean and efficient plugin to accomplish our task. With that said, if you combine the 30 day threat defense feed of Wordfence Free with our real time IP blacklist, your site will take advantage of both worlds.
In closing, Wordfence is definitely king in the WordPress security world, but I often feel that many users simply install the plugin and think they are “done” with security. That’s all well and good, but you should know what you’re getting when you take that route. If you’re looking for some additional free security, couple it with tinyShield.