business Are Wordpress Security Plugins Interfering With Google Webmaster Tools On Your Site(s)?


Well-Known Member
I had assumed the developers of several popular security plugins for Wordpress had taken into consideration how their products would potentially impact engines such as Google with regards to spidering and indexing your sites. But I've seen some concerning occurrences happening in Google Webmaster Tools when running that has me worried.

The first time I encountered this issue was about a year ago with the popular plugin, Wordfence. Everything seemed to be running smoothly, but when I tried to crawl my page in Google Webmaster Tools, the image of the page as it was rendering to Google was showing up as a bunch of gibberish code. Not good at all in terms of SEO! I eventually opted to stop using that plugin since I could not get an acceptable resolution from their support.

Lately I've been using iThemes Security on all my sites, but I've now run into a potential problem with that as well. I happen to also be using a slider plugin on my site called LayerSlider WP, and it's sliders are not rendering at all in Google Webmaster Tools when I have the iThemes Security plugin enabled.

This is particularly frustrating because these sliders should be relatively SEO friendly since they are no longer in Flash, but rather, made up entirely of HTML, CSS and Javascript. I have a lot of SEO optimized text and other content in them that Google apparently is not seeing at all.

As best as I can tell, it has something to do with the iThemes plugin blocking access to the JQuery files which the slider depends on to launch and display. When I turn the iThemes security plugin off, the slider renders properly in Google Webmaster Tools. I'm going to have to dig further into the options of both plugins to see if there is a workaround to this, but just wanted to give you all a heads up if it's been a while since you've checked up on your site in GWT, and if you've been adding various other plugins since then.