Restrict access to WordPress REST API
It's time to take control of WordPress REST API
The Cerber Security plugin allows you to restrict or completely block access to the WordPress REST API. To enable protection go to the Hardening tab on the plugin admin page and enable Block access to the WordPress REST API.
If you use Contact Form 7, Jetpack or any other plugin that make use of REST API and force you to use it, you need to whitelist its REST API namespace as described below.
Permit access to a particular REST API namespace
What’s namespace? Namespace is a part of a REST URL that allows WordPress to recognize what plugin or a part of code must serve a certain REST API request. To get the namespace take a string between /wp-json/ and the next slash in the REST URL. Every plugin that utilize REST API uses its own unique namespace.
Specify namespace exceptions for REST API if it’s needed. For instance, if you use the Contact Form 7 plugin, the namespace is
contact-form-7, for the Jetpack plugin it’s
jetpack, for the Yoast SEO plugin it’s
Permit your users to use REST API
Check Allow REST API for logged in users if you want to allow using REST API for any authorized (logged in) WordPress user without limitation.
Restrict access to WordPress REST API by IP address or IP network
To permit access to REST API for a specific IP address or an IP network add them to the White IP Access List.
To block access to REST API for a specific IP address or an IP network add them to the Black IP Access List.
Read more: Using IP Access Lists to protect WordPress
Protection against REST API user enumeration
To stop user enumeration and block access to users details via REST API you just need to enable Stop user enumeration setting on the Hardening WordPress tab. This security feature is designed to detect and prevent hackers from scanning your site for user names and user details. When it’s enabled Cerber Security blocks both, the REST API user enumeration and traditional user enumeration requests for author archive pages with URL like /?author=n. So nobody will have access to the user details via REST API unless you permit access to them as described above.
What is REST API anyway?
In a nutshell it’s a technology that allows two different piece of code (applications) to talk to each other and exchange data in a standardized way. Using REST API enables developers to create, read and update WordPress content from external applications running on a different computer or a website. The WP REST API is enabled by default starting WordPress version 4.7.0.
Read more: Why it’s important to restrict access to the WP REST API
Developers documentation: https://developer.wordpress.org/rest-api/