Is the most downloaded security plugin the best?

Is the most downloaded security plugin the best?
datum-geschreven 18 Aug 2023

This message provides information about the most downloaded/active security plugins available in the WordPress plugins section on

What is the most downloaded/active security plugin at the moment?

  1. WordFence has 3,000,000 active users.
  2. iThemes Security has 1,000,000+ active users.
  3. All In One WP Security & Firewall has 800,000+ active users.
  4. Sucuri has 700,000+ active users.
  5. Cerber Security has 100,000+ active installations.


It is surprising that WordFence has three times more users compared to iThemes Security. This could be due to the extensive configuration options of iThemes Security, which may seem a bit complicated for first-time users, or it could be attributed to the marketing efforts of WordFence.

It’s also possible that iThemes Security transitions to a different plugin for its premium version, making the free version inactive. When you upgrade to the pro version, you get a different plugin with the same functionality but with additional features.

WordFence offers a license that provides more features within the plugin itself, which contributes to their higher user numbers.

Is WordFence better than iThemes?

This is a subjective matter of preference and experience. We have been using iThemes for years, and it works well. They collaborate with Sucuri for scanning, and iThemes Security has all the necessary features. We are familiar with these features because we extensively analyzed the 2015 release of iThemes Security to understand its functionality and workings in detail.

iThemes is simply good, and as the saying goes, if something is good, you shouldn’t change it. It could only get worse.

Other security plugins

There is “All In One WP Security,” which is excessively all-encompassing in my opinion. There is also “Cerber,” which, as mentioned earlier, has a relatively low number of active installations. Cerber is an excellent plugin with impressive features that WordFence and iThemes can learn from. It’s surprising and unfortunate that it has fewer users. However, from a marketing perspective, “CERBER” doesn’t sound appealing, does it? It’s not easy to remember.

Is the most downloaded/active security plugin the best?

Well, WordFence and iThemes are currently the best. They have a good cash flow, allowing them to maintain a strong team. Whether they perform better than Cerber or All-In-One Security is still debatable. In the rapidly evolving world of hacking, the best security plugin is the one whose team consistently resolves vulnerabilities first, time and time again, week after week.

A product is only as good as the team behind it, and numbers are only relevant if the team continues with passion. After all, hackers around the world are constantly at work.

In that regard, kudos to all the builders of security plugins!

If you’re looking for a good security plugin

, go for WordFence or iThemes Security.

If you want to ensure that your website is secure, keep in mind that a product is only as good as the team behind it, and you are the weakest link.

Configuring the security plugin correctly is crucial, and this can be a daunting task, not only for website owners but even for WordPress developers.


You need to enable/disable settings such as XML-RPC, the REST API, directory browsing, and logs.

We spent years perfecting these configurations because certain plugins require XML-RPC or the REST API, and blocking all 404 IPs may not be beneficial.

It’s a specialized skill, a fascinating one. But it’s not something you can do on your own.

Feel free to hire us or ask questions

If you have a serious business website, you can hire us to secure your website. Security is a necessity, especially if you have an online store, not a luxury!

We will provide an affordable invoice with VAT that you can give to your accountant or declare for tax purposes.

If you decide to tackle it yourself, do thorough research like you’re doing now by reading this entire article (kudos to you!). You can learn more on our website in the news section or by searching on Google.

You can also ask questions in the comments. Sometimes, we have busy weeks, but we always do our best to respond within a few days.

De meeste artikelen worden geschreven door Mathieu Scholtes, de eigenaar van WPBeveiligen. Op de hoogte blijven van het laatste WordPress nieuws? WordPress tips? WordPress aanbiedingen?
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