9 Best WordPress Malware Removal Plugins


Best WordPress Malware Removal Plugins

Have you found malware on your WordPress website? High-value sites are a product of labor, effort, and hours of attention to detail. So when you find malware on your website, the possibility of losing all of it can be extremely stressful.

For WordPress sites, the process of removing malware can be undertaken in a few key ways. You can manually remove the malware from your site (although that is absolutely not recommended), you can hire an expert to clean up your site or you can use the best WordPress malware removal plugin

Of these options, a malware removal plugin for WordPress is by far the fastest, cheapest, and most effective way. Given that malware gets worse with time, malware removal is quite literally a race against the damage it can cause.

There are several malware removal plugins or tools available for WordPress sites. But not all of them are made equal. We tested a bunch to figure out which WordPress malware removal plugins work best.

TL;DR: We tested several plugins for malware removal, and MalCare is by far the best option. Remove malware from your site within seconds with MalCare’s auto-clean feature, and for more complex malware, get unlimited expert support.

As we discussed, not all WordPress malware removal plugins are designed the same. So how do you pick the right plugin for your WordPress site? 

To bring an objective view to this list, we wanted to be absolutely sure of our verdict. While we believe strongly in MalCare, we tested it against several other plugins to ensure that our claims were backed by hard evidence. 

In order to determine the cleanup efficiency of each of these plugins, we tested their cleanup process, scanning accuracy, post-cleanup results, and the time taken for malware removal. 

1. MalCare – Best WordPress Malware Removal Plugin

MalCare has by far the quickest and best WordPress malware removal plugins available. Not all security plugins are the same, and very few of them offer instant malware removal. However, MalCare is a complete security solution that offers deep scanning for your website, protects it with an intelligent firewall, and one-click cleanups get rid of malware faster than any other plugin you will encounter. 

What to expect:

  • Thorough malware scanning
  • Automated scheduled scans
  • One-click auto cleanups
  • Emergency cleanup service
  • Quick and reliable support
  • Intelligent firewall
  • Vulnerability detection
  • Bot protection


  • Automated on-demand scans
  • Flawless cleanups
  • Quick malware removal
  • Does not affect server performance
  • Real-time alerts
  • No false positives


  • The free version does not offer cleanups

Price: Free/ Starting at $99 a year

Another reason we love MalCare is that the free version itself offers a lot of value. You can scan your site for free on MalCare and upgrade if the scanner detects malware. It comes packed with features such as bot protection, activity log, geoblocking, backups, staging, migration, and more. 

MalCare also does not make you choose between security and performance. Since MalCare does not run the scans on your website server, the load of the processes does not slow your site down. It also sends you alerts only when necessary, so your inbox isn’t flooded with plugin-related mails. We often say that there are three must-haves to website security and several bonus features—MalCare has it all. 

Don’t take our word for it. Here is what MalCare’s existing customers have to say:

MalCare customer review

2. Wordfence

Wordfence is another great WordPress malware removal service to consider if your website is infected. It is one of the biggest names in website security, and for good reason. They have a vast knowledge bank that painstakingly tracks malware and vulnerabilities, which allows them to detect the same in their scans. They use a signature matching algorithm to detect malware, but that also means that if your website is infected with new malware, Wordfence won’t be able to catch it. 

What to expect:

  • Malware scanner
  • Repair option for cleanups
  • Web application firewall


  • Priority support for premium members
  • Quick repair and delete option


Price: Starts at $99/year, Premium cleanups at $490 per site

Also, Wordfence does not offer automatic cleanups. They allow you to repair certain files and delete some. This method can be effective if the malware is limited to a certain portion of your website, but most often than not, malware is deeply intertwined with website code if it is left there for long enough. Therefore, the repair does not cover malware removal in the most effective sense. 

Wordfence does have a premium cleanup service that can remove malware from your site manually. And it is largely known to be effective. However, manual cleanups take some time, and in the case of malware, the more time that it is left on the website, the more damage it can cause. It is also an extremely expensive exercise, with a one-year guarantee, only if you follow their post-cleanup list religiously. 

Overall, Wordfence is a good option for malware removal, but only if you can afford it. 

3. Sucuri

Our tests with Sucuri have brought us to a bittersweet conclusion of the plugin. While Sucuri has a decent WordPress malware removal service, it can do a lot better as an overall security plugin. When we tested Sucuri, it could only detect about 30% of the malware on our sites, and the configurations were painful. 

What to expect:

  • Manual clean up service
  • Server-side scanner
  • Firewall protection


  • Easy installation
  • Quick and flawless manual cleanups


  • No auto cleanups
  • Ineffective scanning
  • High impact on server resources
  • Constant alerts

Price: Starting at $199/year

If you ask us only about malware removal, Sucuri’s manual cleanup service is excellent. They cleaned up our site within 10 hours and it came back squeaky clean. So we definitely believe that Sucuri is a good pick, even though their scanner detected malware on our site after the cleanup. It is also a reasonably priced solution, as you can get unlimited cleanups with their premium plans for a month. 

4. CleanTalk

CleanTalk is a slightly lesser-known malware removal plugin for WordPress, as compared to the plugins we’ve discussed earlier. Like most other plugins CleanTalk offers all the basic features required for website security—scanner, firewall, and malware removal. It is one of the most affordable malware removal plugins available out there. But the lower cost does compromise on the effectiveness of the plugin, unfortunately. 

What to expect:

  • Spam removal
  • Malware scanner
  • Web application firewall
  • Brute force protection


  • Easy spam removal
  • Scheduled auto-scans


  • Automatically deletes infected files
  • No other cleanup options available

Price: Starting at $9 a year

CleanTalk does not offer cleanups the way most plugins do. Instead, it automatically deletes infected files that are found during the scans. Given that false positives are a common occurrence during scans, this could lead to your website breaking, data loss, or a whole host of issues that make matters worse. 

We actually prefer CleanTalk’s anti-spam features instead, and have tested it to find that it is aggressive but effective at keeping out contact form spam really well.

So while the $9 a year seems like a steal, think about what you will be trading in for the discount. 

5. BulletProof Security

Another WordPress malware removal plugin that offers repairs, but not cleanups, is BulletProof Security. They offer a lifetime license to their users, unlike other plugins that work on a subscription basis.  At a one-time cost, BulletProof security offers malware scanning, firewall protection for plugin files, and a repair option for infected files.

What to expect:

  • Website repair
  • Malware scanner
  • Firewall protection


  • Easy setup
  • Maintenance mode


  • No thorough cleanups
  • Repair flags files for deletion—dangerous

Price: $69.95

The repair option on BulletProof security is their attempt at malware removal. When the scanner detects malware, they offer you a choice—you can either ignore, flag, or delete the files that are infected. As we have discussed previously, deleting files, unless you know what you’re doing, can lead to dangerous consequences.

If you want basic security at a one-time price, BulletProof is a decent option to consider. However, if you own a high traction or high-value site, it is best to go for a better-rounded security solution.

6. Cerber Security

Cerber Security

Cerber is one of the lesser-known WordPress malware removal plugins, but it is one of the more effective ones. Cerber has a sophisticated malware scanner that allows them to detect malware on your site, which you can schedule at regular intervals. Cerber also offers auto-cleanups, which is not a common feature in malware removal plugins. 

What to expect:

  • Auto-cleanups
  • Malware scanner


  • Easy to use
  • Quick cleanups


  • Automatically deletes files
  • No option offered for thorough cleanups
  • Affects website performance

Price: Starting at $99 a year

But this wildcard plugin also has certain shortcomings. It does not offer firewall protection, and the cleanups involve the automatic deletion of malware. The saving grace is that you can turn off this feature, and use the auto cleanup whenever you feel the need to. Cerber is also reasonably priced. However, they do not offer as many features as they could have for a more rounded security experience. 

💡 While we have listed the best malware removal plugins above, there are a few security plugins worth mentioning that do not offer malware removal services but are useful or noteworthy for WordPress security.

7. Jetpack


Jetpack is a WordPress plugin that offers several features including security, performance, and backups. Its security plan allows you to scan your site in minutes, audit your site with their logs, detect vulnerabilities, and keep out bad bots.

What to expect:

  • Malware scanner
  • Activity log
  • Brute force protection
  • Downtime monitoring
  • Vulnerability detection


  • Good support
  • External dashboard
  • Integrated with WordPress.com account


  • No cleanups
  • Only brute force protection in free plan
  • Inadequate scanning
  • Inadequate vulnerability detection
  • No firewall

Price: Starting at $150/year

Jetpack is built by the makers of WordPress, Automattic, and therefore enjoys the goodwill of the brand. It offers some exciting features such as an external dashboard and great support. Even though it does not offer malware removal, it is a good plugin to consider for scanning, backups, and performance.

8. All-in-One WP Security

All-in-One Security is a popular security plugin without malware removal. If you require basic features such as scans and firewall,  which are completely free, All-in-one can be a good option. All-in-one comes with a security scanner that scans for modified files. It does not necessarily look for malware but can detect malware with the scanner. 

What to expect:

  • Security scanner
  • Brute force protection
  • Spam security
  • Firewall protection
  • User account security


  • Good interface
  • Graphs and charts
  • Core files backup


  • No cleanups
  • No malware scanning
  • Plugin interferes with indexing

Price: Free

While the plugin is free, it has one major drawback. The bot protection it offers does not differentiate between good bots and bad bots. As a result, All-in-one often interferes with Google indexing because it blocks out Googlebot. 

9. SecuPress

Another security plugin that is worth mentioning is SecuPress. It offers basic security features such as scanning, firewall protection, logs, and more. This plugin is especially useful if you need an aesthetic interface that also generates well-designed reports. 

What to expect:

  • Malware scanner
  • Firewall protection
  • Scheduled scans
  • Backups
  • Security logs


  • Great interface
  • Security report generation


  • No cleanups
  • Scanning not adequate
  • Bad support

Price: Starting at $59 a year

SecuPress has some issues, such as delayed and inadequate support and an ineffective scanner. So if you choose to go for it, make sure the features are compatible with your requirements.

Factors to consider in choosing the best WordPress malware removal plugin

When choosing the best WordPress malware removal plugin for your WordPress site, there are several factors that you must consider. Depending on your website, and your requirements, the perfect fit might differ, but these factors should help you decide easily. 

  • Malware scanning: Malware removal plugins have in-built scanners to detect WordPress malware. These scanners can offer a good insight into how effective the entire process will be. Because, if the malware isn’t detected, it can’t be cleaned.
  • Quick support: Malware removal can be a stressful and often tedious process. Depending on the complexity of the malware, the cleanup process can hit roadblocks. It is important that the plugin you choose offers emergency support in time so that the process is smooth.
  • Time consumed: The actual cleanup accuracy is very important for the malware removal plugin. However, equally important is the time taken to complete the cleanup. Because if it takes days on end, the malware may cause more damage in the meanwhile.
  • Firewall: The firewall, while not a part of malware removal itself, is an essential feature to look for in your malware removal plugin. The firewall keeps out most attacks and exploits so that the chances of malware infection go down.
  • Performance: Finally, you want to pick a plugin that does not use up your server resources, slowing down your website performance. Security and performance should not be a tradeoff.

These factors will give you a fair idea of how good the WordPress malware cleaner is, and whether you can trust it to take care of your WordPress site.

When to use a malware removal plugin for WordPress? 

If you are wondering whether or not to use a malware removal plugin, ask yourself: Can you afford to let malware cause havoc on your site?

Of course, this does not mean that everyone needs malware removal. But given that you’re reading this, chances are that you at least suspect a malware infection on your WordPress site. And if you suspect it, there is a good chance that your site is infected. 

Instead of simply going for a malware removal plugin, look for a complete security plugin, such as MalCare, which will scan, clean, and protect your WordPress site all at once. With its scheduled automatic scans, vulnerability detection, and intelligent firewall, you will be able to ward off any hacks before they infect your site.

Final Thoughts

We hope that this article helped you understand how WordPress malware removal plugins function, and which one works the best for you. We have collated this data so that you can skip the mental exercises, and make an informed decision quickly—which is key in times of malware infection.

If you want to secure your WordPress site, a complete security solution like MalCare is the only option. MalCare is a good tool for prevention as well as cure, if need be. 

If you have more questions, feel free to reach out to us.


Which is the best free malware removal tool?

When it comes to malware removal, free is not a good parameter to look for. Malware removal is a tedious and time-consuming process that takes several hours, even for experts. Therefore, the chances of best WordPress malware removal plugins or tools being free are slimmer than the chances of finding a unicorn in the middle of a city.

MalCare offers free scans for you to detect if your site has been infected. If it is, you can then choose to upgrade and remove the malware on your site within minutes.

How do I remove malware from a WordPress site?

The best malware removal method for a WordPress site is to use a security plugin such as MalCare. You only need to follow these steps to remove malware from your site with MalCare:

  • Install MalCare on your site
  • Let MalCare run the first scan and detect malware
  • Upgrade your account to avail the cleanup features
  • Hit ‘auto-clean’ and watch MalCare clean up your site in minutes!

How do I check my WordPress site for malware?

Use a security scanner, such as that of MalCare, to confirm whether your WordPress site has malware. MalCare offers free scans, so all you need to do is install MalCare on your site, and let it sync. MalCare will automatically scan your site and alert you if it is infected.

How to find the best malware removal plugin for WordPress?

While the definition of best may vary according to your requirements, the following factors are necessary in a WordPress malware removal plugin or service:

  • Malware scanning
  • Malware cleaning
  • Firewall
  • Vulnerability detection
  • Activity log
  • Active support



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