Are you looking to force logout of all users in WordPress?
The user typically does not log out after the session. The premise of opening the website and instantly starting surfing is quite attractive. Moreover, people do not want to remember the username-passwords, so they click the remember me button.
Well it could be good for users, but you are responsible for keeping their account secure. So when the account is not logged out, it becomes a security vulnerability and becomes a soft target for attacks like brute force.
So from time to time, you have to force log out all the users.
In this quick tutorial, we are going to force log out all the woWordPress users from a website using a simple WordPress plugin.
Why Forced Logouts of all Users?
Retention is better than acquisition. Many websites follow this, and in doing so they create exclusive content for the returning users a.k.a the user who creates an account on the website.
The exclusive features and content works as a magnet, and the users keep coming back to the website. But as I said, they do not log out. Adding new features to the user’s account who does not log out is difficult. Forcing the users to logout becomes essential in that case.
How to Force Logout of All Users in WordPress?
We will be installing a WordPress plugin: WP Force Logout. To do that, navigate to the Plugin >> Add New from the left side tray on the WordPress admin dashboard.
Once the installation is complete, activate the plugin. The plugins do not take a separate space on the dashboard. Instead, it gets integrated into the User section.
The next step is to open the Users >> All Users.
On the page, you can view all the users on the website. There will be a logout link for the users who are logged in.
You can also check the box and log out all the selected users in one click. If you want to logout all the user without selecting, click on the Logout All Users button.
That’s it. You successfully forced logout all users in WordPress.
Consequences of Forcing Bulk Log Out in WordPress
When you automatically log out all the WordPress users, it will have some effects. There will be confusion among the users. They all will try to log in again. The best practice is to send a newsletter and update your users that you are going to run a security audit of the WordPress website. So they will expect the account check out.
If you did the force log out in defense on an upcoming attack, you would not have time to update the users. In that case, you can send an email after forcing all the users to logout. Inform the users that a security audit has been done and as a result the account access has been evoked.
The more users you have on the website, the more challenging this would be. Being transparent would help in reducing the confusion.
WordPress security is not one thing. It is a set of best practices and always being on alert. There are many things you do to prevent the hacking, and there are many actions you take during an attack. Force log out of all users in WordPress is one of the steps you take when cleaning the WordPress site.
An idle logged in account is a security vulnerability. Better would be to automatically log out the idle users. But once in a while, it is fine to force logout of all users in WordPress.
In this quick tutorial we learn how to do it. If you encounter any issue, please feel free to ask in the comments.