Plugin – Security Header Generator

Plugin - Security Header Generator

Posted:  October 13, 2021

Plugin - Security Header Generator

Managing the hosting for thousands of websites is no easy feat. WordPress makes that a tad more difficult because it currently runs over 1/3 of the websites on the internet. Keeping an application with this kind of global coverage secure should be the number 1 priority of every web hosting company, however, this is not always the case.

This plugin attempts to implement the necessary server response headers to help mitigate the most common website attacks, and allows the site managers greater and quicker control over the those headers, which would normally entail a great deal of back-and-forth discussions with their hosting companies support teams.

Why bother going this route?

Well, I have over 17 years development and server management experience and in all that time I can proudly say, I have never had one of my websites hacked.

Couple this with the fact that not every hosting company will allow you to set these headers for your site on your own, some will not even implement them if you ask them to.

Description

This plugin attempts to automatically implement the server response headers necessary to mitigate the most common website attacks, in an easy to use management interface suitable for most website managers.

It allows you to configure the headers you need and attempts to automatically generate some of the more complicated ones.

It then generates the proper server software configurations for the most common server types, just in case the hosting company your site resides on removes the ability to set the headers programatically.

Please click the More Info links below for explanations of the headers implemented.

Features

Directions & Settings

Install

  • Download the plugin, unzip it, and upload to your sites `/wp-content/plugins/` directory
    • You can also upload it directly to your Plugins admin
  • Activate the plugin through the ‘Plugins’ menu in WordPress

Usage

Head over to the admin section of your site and click “Security Headers”, configure how you need it to be configured. The configured headers will automatically be implemented. Please be aware that some web hosts do not allow the header implementation utilized in this plugin (PHP), if you find this is the case for your site, head over to the “Implementation” page to see how you can accomplish this with other methods.

Once configured you can try to have the content security policy automatically generated by getting into CLI on your sites server and running the following command: wp csp generate

That will attempt to parse your entire website and gather up all external domains tied to the resource it is attached to, then create a custom post to store the results in.

You may need to run this more than once, and you will need to have some patience while it runs.

NOTE: If you are running this in a multi-site environment, you must pass the --url flag to the WP CLI command. Making the full command: wp csp generate --url=YOUR_SITES_FULL_URL

GOTCHA

If your hosting environment is already setting these headers, most likely your settings in this plugin will NOT get overwritten with the values you specify.

If this is indeed the case, please check with your hosting company if they are, or check your server configuration for the headers getting set. The plugin will do it’s best to override them, but in some environments this is just not possible.

You can also check the Implementation tab to see if your hosting will implement the applicable configuration for you.

Settings

  • Standard Security Tabstandard headers

    • Apply to Admin
      • Select yes or no to apply these same headers to the admin side of your site.
    • WordPress Defaults
      • Select Yes or No to have the plugin automatically include WordPress specific external resources in the Content Security Policy
        • I have left this as an unconditional field. There may be a point in we browsers futures where it may have a use other than just the CSP
          • img-src: *.googletagmanager.com *.w.org *.gravatar.com *.google.com *.google-analytics.com *.gstatic.com
          • script-src: *.g.doubleclick.net *.google-analytics.com *.google.com *.googletagmanager.com *.gstatic.com
          • style-src: *.googleapis.com *.gstatic.com
          • font-src: *.gstatic.com *.bootstrapcdn.com
          • frame-src: *.g.doubleclick.net *.google.com *.fls.doubleclick.net
          • connect-src: *.google-analytics.com *.wpengine.com yoast.com *.google.com *.g.doubleclick.net
    • Strict Transport Security
    • Frame Sources
    • XSS Protection
    • Prevent MimeType Sniffing
    • Origin Referrers
      • Select Yes or No to have the plugin add a header to allow only origin referrers
      • Select Referrer Policy to send
        • No Referrer: The Referer header will be omitted entirely. No referrer information is sent along with requests.
        • Origin Only: Only send the origin of the document as the referrer.
        • Same Origin: A referrer will be sent for same-site origins, but cross-origin requests will send no referrer information.
        • Strict Origin on Cross Domain: Send the origin, path, and querystring when performing a same-origin request, only send the origin when the protocol security level stays the same while performing a cross-origin request
        • No Referrer on Downgrade: The origin, path, and querystring of the URL are sent as a referrer when the protocol security level stays the same
        • Origin on Cross Domain: Send the origin, path, and query string when performing a same-origin request, but only send the origin of the document for other cases.
        • Strict Origin: Only send the origin of the document as the referrer when the protocol security level stays the same
        • Full Referrer: Send the origin, path, and query string when performing any request, regardless of security.
    • Force Downloads
    • Cross Domain Origins
    • Upgrade Insecure Requests
    • Decline FLoC
  • Content Security Policy Tabcsp settings

    • Content Security Policy
      • Select Yes or No to have the plugin attempt to automatically generate a Content Security Policy. Selecting Yes, will open up a handful of text fields that you can add additional domains to. Please only include the FQDN, and please organize them accordingly.
        • Use a space-delimited list if you need add more than one additional domain.
      • This will parse the enqueued styles and scripts for the front-end of your site automatically, provided your theme has properly done this.
      • This will add 2 additional headers to your site. Content-Security-Policy and X-Content-Security-Policy, configured with the detected and custom added domains to their respective content types.
      • See here for more information: https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Web/HTTP/CSP
  • Permissions Policy Tabpermissions policy

    • Select Yes or No to have the plugin attempt to automatically generate a Permissions Policy. Selecting Yes, will open up a handful of directives and the sources for them. If you select “Source” for any of them you will be allowed to enter a space-delimited list of URL’s to be allowed as sources.
      • Please make sure to use full URL’s for the sources including the protocol used. (example: https://kevinpirnie.com)
    • See here for more information: https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Web/HTTP/Headers/Feature-Policy
  • Implementation Tabimplementation

    • This tab will generate and show you the most common server type configurations for your configured security headers. If your hosting company does not allow PHP to set the headers, you will need to copy the config for your server, and send it to your hosting company to have implemented for you in order for them to work.

Changelog


= 2.0.08 =
* Convert all major comments to phpdoc
* Fix `OR DIE` on direct file access
* Removed double PHP version check (whoops!)
* move the plugins stylesheet
* Core 5.8.1 Compliance

= 1.9.51 =
* Update: Rewrite Field Framework

= 1.9.47 =
* Update: Field Framework

= 1.9.44 =
* fixed minor issue setting FLoC header

= 1.9.43 =
* Removed sticky header for settings
    * it was not working properly in all browsers anyways
* Implemented Permissions-Policy header
    * See Here for more information: https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Web/HTTP/Headers/Feature-Policy
* Organize header settings into separate tabs
* Fixed issue where setting would automatically collapse
* Re-implement uninstall

= 1.9.27 =
* WordPress Core 5.8 compliance
    * Tested
* **feature** re-implement WP CLI functionality
    * Attempts to spider the site gathering up only external resources like imagery, stylesheets, scripts, fonts, frames, etc...
    * Creates a custom post type to hold the output of the parsed external resources
    * Adds the domains only to the Content-Security-Policy header

= 1.9.23 =
* Fix issue where admin menu would not show for some
* Force PHP 7.3 minimum on actviation

= 1.9.18 =
* Publishing
    * slight issue in readme was preventing updating to 1.9.17

= 1.9.17 =
* Remove the remote header checks implemented in v1.9.11
* Update Documentation

= 1.9.11 =
* New class to attempt server-side header Implementation
* If server-side headers do exist, show a note in Settings
* Attempt to override existing headers
    * only headers set by plugin
* Cache the above check for 1 day
* Temprorarily remove the CLI functionality

= 1.8.23 =
* Update settings framework
* Updated minimum PHP requirement to PHP 7.3

= 1.8.14 =
* Update for WP Core 5.7.2
* Update methods to force output type

= 1.8.11 =
* implement FLoC decline setting and headers

= 1.7.03 =
* full field framework update

= 1.7.02 = 
* field framework update
* little styling tweak for it

= 1.6.10 = 
* fix path issue

= 1.6.09 =
* replace field framework
    * big thanks to Codestar: https://codecanyon.net/user/codestar
* rebuild the settings and retrieval
* rework admin sending of headers
* clear cache on settings save

= 1.5.22 =
* update field framework
* 5.7 compliance
* check for existing functionality

= 1.4.11 =
* fix uninstall to remove all options, including for multisite

= 1.4.09 =
* Implement true autoloader
    * rename class files accordingly
* Implement true autoloader for CLI
    * rename class files accordingly

= 1.3.13 =
* First public release

Download

https://wordpress.org/plugins/security-header-generator/

Kevin Pirnie

20+ Years of PC and server maintenance & over 15+ years of web development/design experience; you can rest assured that I take every measure possible to ensure your computers are running to their peak potentials. I treat them as if they were mine, and I am quite a stickler about keeping my machines up to date and optimized to run as well as they can.