Can I log WordPress user activity without a plugin?

WP Activity Log questions

A WordPress activity log, also known as a WordPress audit log, is an important tool in keeping your website safe, secure, and in compliance with legislation such as GDPR. It can also help you prevent fraud, encourage ownership among team members, and improve troubleshooting processes.

While WordPress does have a log, this does not include user activity. In fact, it is restricted to debugging PHP errors, warnings, and notices. This makes it a very useful tool for developers to understand and fix WordPress issues; however, it does not help us track user activity.

Maintaining a WordPress user activity log without plugin is not possible. Fortunately, getting a WordPress user activity log plugin is easier than you might think.

WordPress does not have any activity logging capabilities, so it cannot keep an activity log. No entries are hidden in the database that can be accessed – the functionality is not there. This is precisely why you need WP Activity Log – the most comprehensive WordPress activity log plugin to log user activity on your WordPress site.

The good news is that once you install the WP Activity Log plugin, it will start tracking user activity straight away. The plugin installs as easily as any other plugin. Configuration takes mere seconds thanks to the built-in wizard, which walks you through the entire setup process.

It is important to note that WP Activity Log cannot retrieve logs for activities before it was installed since it is the plugin that logs user activities. This is why it’s essential to start using WP Activity Log as soon as possible.

Developed by Melapress, WP Activity Log uses sensors to detect user and system activities on your websites or WordPress multisite networks and record them in the activity log. Aside from the activity itself, it also collects useful data and metadata that can help you:

  • Improve incident response
  • Implement proactive security measures
  • Thwart fraud attempts
  • Encourage ownership
  • Achieve compliance

and much more!

Despite WP Activity Log’s popularity and high-profile customers such as Amazon, NASA, and Intel, among many others, some myths surrounding activity logs persist. We are here to set the record straight by addressing the most popular myths head-on.

WP Activity Log was the first plugin of its kind to reach the market back in 2013. Since then, it has received many updates, including many performance optimization updates. Today, it has negligible effects on server performance. The WP Activity Log plugin requires minimal resources to run and comes with email support and a 30-day money-back guarantee, making it a very safe purchase.

WP Activity Log does not send any log data to our servers. By default, everything is saved on the WordPress’ database server – the same database where your website stores data. We absolutely cannot access this. Whether you choose the paid version or the free version – the data will always be yours and yours alone.

Furthermore, you can choose to save log data to an external database or mirror it to a third-party service such as AWS Cloudwatch. These features, along with many others, are designed to help you grow your WordPress into a sustainable, successful website.

As the most comprehensive and extensive activity log plugin on WordPress, WP Activity Log logs a wide range of user and system activities. It enables you to monitor user activity across your entire WordPress website, including popular third-party plugins such as WooCommerce, Yoast SEO, MemberPress, Gravity Forms, and many others.

Each entry in the activity log includes important information such as the user account, IP address, date, time, and many other events.

WP Activity Log is also able to log WordPress core changes, changes to site settings, and much more.

WP Activity Log is able to keep track of several user activities, including specific events related to WordPress core and many third-party plugins, including:

  • User logins and logouts
  • Changes to user profiles
  • Failed login attempts
  • User changes to posts, pages, and forms

WP Activity Log also logs activities related to third-party plugins straight out of the box, including:

  • WooCommerce
  • Yoast
  • WP Forms
  • Gravity Forms
  • MemberPress

and many others!

WP Activity Log is more than a simple history plugin. Aside from tracking activity, it includes many useful tools that enable you to turn the log data and insights into action.

The Institute of Higher Learning offers membership-based courses through WordPress and MemberPress. Like many other membership-based services, password sharing was always a concern as this drives down revenue.

With WP Activity Log, the management could see whether any user was logging in from the same IP address or different ones – a clear indicator of password sharing. Furthermore, thanks to the User Session Management module that comes with WP Activity Log, simultaneous sessions from the same user account were blocked – severely limiting students’ ability to share passwords.

Speaking of password sharing, with WP Activity Log you can also record failed login attempts. This includes instances where the user entered an incorrect password and instances where both username and password were wrong.

Custom Socks Inc. offers its customers custom socks made to order using WooCommerce on their WordPress site. Customers can choose size, material, and design for a truly bespoke experience. Fraud was always a concern that, without a time-stamped log of events, can be difficult to prove.

Thanks to WP Activity Log, this small business owner was able to identify a case of fraud where a customer changed the address after an order was made and then claimed to have never received his shipment. WP Activity Log showed the exact time the order was placed and the exact time the address was changed – proving once and for all there was no shortcoming from their end.

WP Activity Log is one of the most popular plugins for improving the management and security of WordPress websites. With over 200,000 active installations and regular updates, adding WP Activity Log to your WordPress toolbox is a smart move.

WP Activity Log comes in a number of different plans, including free and premium. The free plan is completely free and enables you to track activities with no restrictions whatsoever. The premium plans, on the other hand, add several features and functionalities that are not available in the free plan and make for great additions to this incredibly useful tool.

Once you acquire your copy of WP Activity Log, you can install it just like you would with any other WordPress plugin. If you opt for the premium version, you will need to upload the .ZIP file to your WordPress website. An email with all instructions is sent upon purchase. Email support is also available should you require it.

On the other hand, the free version can be installed directly from the WordPress repository.

Run the initial configuration wizard

Upon plugin activation from the WordPress dashboard, WP Activity Log will run a user-friendly initial setup wizard that walks you through the basic configuration process. Any settings configured here can be changes at any point through the plugin’s settings, so don’t be shy. The wizard shouldn’t take more than a few seconds of your time, by the end of which WP Activity Log will be ready to start monitoring system and user activity on your WordPress websites.

WP Activity Log comes with several additional and advanced features to help you make the most out of your user activity log.

Untether yourself while staying informed with notifications on the go. WP Activity Log supports both email and SMS notifications. You’ll find built-in notifications that can be enabled at the click of a button and a custom notification builder to ensure you’re always informed of the activities most critical to you.

Ensure all-around activity log coverage with out-of-the-box support for 3rd party plugins, including WooCommerce and Yoast SEO, among many others. You can also log any custom event thanks to the available API that enables you to create your own sensors.

Use the search filters to find the events you’re looking for. Filter by date range, specific user, user role, and much more to effortlessly drill down into your log.

WP Activity Log comes with a reporting engine that enables you to create ad-hoc and scheduled reports. Reports can be exported in a variety of formats and sent via email to key stakeholders. White labeling functionality is also available for the customized look.

Use the User Session Management module to set up policies to prevent multiple users from logging in with the same account and automatically terminate idle sessions. You can also terminate all active sessions at the click of a button – a handy feature in an emergency situation.

Save your log to an external database, mirror to log management systems, and archive old activities to ensure your database keeps running light at all times.

Packed with useful features that can help you monitor your WordPress websites activities.

WordPress does not have the functionality required to keep WordPress activity logs. As such, a plugin is needed. The good news is that WP Activity Log offers a comprehensive log and several additional tools to help you make the most out of the user activity log.

It can also keep a record of activities that go beyond user activities, giving you a bird’s eye view of activity on your site.

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